Magnet fishers fined after reporting ammunition catch at Fort Stewart

Credit: Outdoors Weekly

Credit: Outdoors Weekly

A magnet fishing YouTube channel fell afoul of Fort Stewart Conservation Law Enforcement earlier this year.

The video shows Bryce Nachtwey, who runs the YouTube channel Outdoors Weekly, magnet fishing off a bridge at Fort Stewart with two other men. The video, posted on June 24 and first reported reported by the Army Times on Aug. 4, shows them dragging up a number of 35 mm training rockets, .50 caliber ammunition and other materials before calling law enforcement to report the potentially explosive finds.

Rather than a pat on the back, though, a game warden with the fort's Conservation Law Enforcement issued them tickets for fishing without a permit.

"Here's the good news ... you're not going to jail as far as I know so far," said a game warden bearing a name tag that reads Lt. Hollmen in the video. "The bad news is y'all are getting tickets."

Kevin Marc Larson, chief of public communications for the fort, said that they were aware of the magnet fishing incident and that any such fishing is prohibited at Fort Stewart, according to a memo on recreational activities on base.

"All recreational metal detecting is prohibited on Fort Stewart and HAAF (electronic metal detector, magnet fishing, etc.)," the policy reads.

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Larson confirmed that the magnet fishers were issued three tickets for recreating without a permit, entering a restricted area, and unauthorized magnet detecting. Hollmen in the video said the fine was $340 for all three tickets for each of them.

"Because Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield is an active training installation, ammunition of various sizes is fired here on a regular basis," Larson wrote. "There is always a potential unexploded ordnance can end up in the environment, to include rivers. The risk of unexploded ordnance being present throughout the training area, regardless of how it got there, is one reason why activities like magnet detecting is not allowed. The other reason is culture resources protection."

Among the items found by Nachtwey and the other fishers was apparently a Delta airlines bag full of the 35 mm training rockets, which appear to be training materials for antitank rockets. How the ammunition found its way into the river is unclear.

"Dumping ammunition anywhere on the installation instead of following proper turn-in procedures is prohibited," Larson said. "The specifics of this incident are under investigation."

Larson also asked that members of the public who find anything that could be potentially explosive call 911 and remember three Rs: "recognize, retreat, and report."

This article originally appeared on Savannah Morning News: Magnet fishers fined after reporting ammunition catch at Fort Stewart


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