Roseburg, Or (KMTR) Mercy Medical Center faced a tense situation this morning when a staff member found what appeared to be a pipe bomb in a women's restroom. The small cardboard pipe device was discovered tucked into a bathroom stall at about six this morning.
Staff immediately called Roseburg Police who determined they were dealing with a homemade bomb. While they canvassed the hospital for other devices, the State Police Bomb Squad was called in to remove the bomb.
No additional devices were found. The removal lasted three hours. Oddly enough, State Police say it doesn't look like someone placed it there with the intent to harm anyone or even explode, but wouldn’t elaborate on what led them to that conclusion.
Roseburg Police describe the device.
"(It) was similar to a pipe bomb except the housing was not metal, it didn't appear that it would have made any fragmentation or shrapnel,” says Sergeant Aaron Dunbar, “we believe that any damage, had the device been triggered would have been limited to that one room."
The explosive was found in an administrative bathroom. Other than five patients being moved to another spot within the hospital, care went on uninterrupted.
"Patients were still being cared for, the emergency department was continuing to see and care for patients,” says Mercy Director of Communications Kathleen Nickel, “and although not a typical day, it was business as usual in terms of patient care and the care we where providing."
She says having the staff trained and prepared for emergency events kept things calm. Police are still investigating. The bomb was taken to an O.S.P. facility in Medford, where it was destroyed.