Divers find pipe bombs in the Chattahoochee River

Jeremy Sides, who runs a YouTube channel featuring his dives, first found a mortar shell and pipe bomb two weeks ago while diving with friends in the Chattahoochee River off West Paces Ferry Road. Last Sunday afternoon, he found two more pipe bombs in the same spot.
Caption
Jeremy Sides, who runs a YouTube channel featuring his dives, first found a mortar shell and pipe bomb two weeks ago while diving with friends in the Chattahoochee River off West Paces Ferry Road. Last Sunday afternoon, he found two more pipe bombs in the same spot.

Credit: Lance Bryant

Credit: Lance Bryant

In his two years of diving for treasure around Georgia, Jeremy Sides has found Civil War relics, bags of jewelry, centuries-old dentures, and guns.

But the 41-year-old Acworth resident didn’t expect to find a bomb — and certainly not twice in two weeks.

Sides, who runs a YouTube channel featuring his dives, first found a mortar shell and pipe bomb two weeks ago while diving with friends in the Chattahoochee River off West Paces Ferry Road. Last Sunday afternoon, he found two more pipe bombs in the same spot.

The first time, Sides said he was too excited to respond rationally.

“I was pretty reckless when we found them,” Sides said.

Britain Lockhart, who runs another YouTube channel and dove with Sides the first time, said fear only set in after he carried the mortar shell back to the surface.

“It’s kind of hard to tell what that stuff is underneath the water, but when I picked it up, I knew exactly what it was, and I feel like it was really good for us to get that out of the water,” Lockhart said.

After pulling the mortar out of the water, they called 911. Soon after, Homeland Security, park rangers, and local police officers showed up to block off the area and dispose of it. Lockhart recalled the bomb squad told them to be careful in the future, explaining that if water hadn’t entered the fuse, there was a chance the bomb could still be live.

“We’re just trying to do our part picking up trash and cleaning up the environment,” he said. “Coming across this stuff, it’s a thrill, but it’s also very, very scary as well.”

Sides went back to dive in the same spot last Sunday — only to find two more pipe bombs. This time, he said he was more prepared.

“I immediately knew what these were, so I was a different person. I was a little more nervous, and just wanted to put these down and call somebody,” he said.

Similar to the first time, the bomb disposal teams came in with a robot to pick up the pipe bombs and put them in disposal trucks.

“I’m hoping I find more because it’s just going to tell a bigger story of why there’s so many explosives under this one bridge,” Sides explained.

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