September 05, 2003

Bomb Found in Portland

Someone found a bomb on a commuter train in the Portland suburbs.

Investigators are trying to determine how a bomb with the power to kill a person was left on a MAX train in Washington County.

Police explosives experts detonated the device with no injuries Wednesday night.

It was the second bomb scare on Wednesday at the Beaverton Transit Center


"To set it off, you had to light the fuse," Hyde said.

Members of the Portland police bomb disposal unit ignited the device in a nearby field and found it contained explosive material.

"No one speculated on just what it may have been," Hyde said. But, "experts at the scene indicated that it easily could have caused serious injury or death to anyone nearby."

Solberg said it was not clear where on the train the rider found the bomb, and investigators were trying to determine how it got there.

"It might have fallen out of somebody's pocket or a bag," Solberg said.

It seems too amateurish to be the work of a foreign terrorist organization. Looks home-grown or freelance to me.

Posted by Michael J. Totten at September 5, 2003 12:57 PM

Insane. I ride commuter rail every day; this is the kind of thing I hope my wife doesn't hear about.

Does sound like a homegrown amateur, though. Not that the homegrown part makes me feel much better, though, but the amateur part does--if you're stupid enough to let your bomb fall out of your pocket on the train (and not check to see if it's still there before you leave), then there's a good chance you're stupid enough to forget to bring your matches. One hopes.

Posted by: Christopher Luebcke at September 5, 2003 01:40 PM

Well this is very disturbing, seeing as I take my 4 year old on the Max (from the Beaverton Station) a couple of times a month for a fun trip into town...

I'll make sure I keep my eyes much more open, and god help anyone if I ever see anyone placing or trying to light something that looks like a bomb. One of the great benefits of Oregon is it's 'issue at will' CCW permits. And the availabilty of high quality self defense classes, and easy access to top grade shooting facilities and competition.

Really, the thought of bombs on the Max chills my blood.

Posted by: Francis at September 5, 2003 01:58 PM
"Do we believe it's something we are going to continue to have a problem with on TriMet now? No," Hyde said.

Something about "no" strikes me as being the wrong answer.

Posted by: Joe Maller at September 5, 2003 04:10 PM

Cripes, Francis, who needs a gun when you have a four-year-old? Just toss the kid at the bomber's head...

No, but really, you're damn right. See you at the range.

Posted by: dipnut at September 5, 2003 05:23 PM

Viscious morons spend time building bombs. Viscious smart people spend their time deciding on placement and testing fuses.

Twenty-five years ago a buddy of mine who was quite discontented and often stoned built a pipe bomb. He was fourteen. I guess I'm not as terrified of pipe bombs as most people. I know how little time he spent deciding on placement and testing fuses.

Posted by: Patrick Lasswell at September 6, 2003 08:38 AM

Odd to me how little media play this got. I saw it on one edition of The Oregonian, and no place (but here) on the Net.

Posted by: Mark at September 7, 2003 08:13 PM

Could just as easily have been someone out to do in their boss or unfaithful SO. As for the dumb/smart vicious folks thing, have a look at Ted Kazinski's(sp?) pipe-bomb fuse design. Two loops of wire with the insulation stripped off, pushed past each other so that they rested on the insulated part. How he was able to build so many of those damn things without blowing himself up, I'll never know.

Posted by: Cybrludite at September 14, 2003 09:38 PM


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