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Thread: Flashlight Bombs in Phoenix, AZ

  1. #1

    Angry Flashlight Bombs in Phoenix, AZ

    It was bad enough when I learned of idiots using green lasers on pilots. Now here is a MOST DISTURBING development about an alleged "flashlight bomb". From the sound of it, this could be a 2 cr123 light. I wonder if this was a exposion caused by the 2 CR123 cells as opposed to an actual expolsive device.

    either way this does not help innocent, dedicated, well meaning people who wisely choose to wear 2 to 4 lights on their belt.
    http://ktar.com/6/1546702/Small-bomb...ibution-center

    Of course NO flashlight expolsion is a desirable event yet knowing HOW this exposion was caused could help prevent this in the future. ****after reading the article again THIS IS REALLY BAD!, apparently not caused by cheap cr123s but actual explosives!!!!****

    100 years ago people could buy all sorts of stuff in the mail or in catalogs.Let's hope this is not the start of "POLICE USE ONLY" lights forbidden to own by the general public.
    Last edited by tsask; 05-29-2012 at 12:00 PM.

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* Cataract's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    This will not cause a new law or ban on flashlights, but it certainly is disturbing that some people are sick enough to plant explosives in everyday objects ad even more so in objects sent to donation centers. They just chose a flashlight because there is a button and you already know someone is going to press it even before having a look inside. The explosives where in a regular yellow flashlight, so it won't bring any special attention to our hobby, but you might want to double check that you didn't drop your light before you leave a store just in case someone read this article and is on the lookout.
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  3. #3
    Flashaholic* davyro's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    At the end of the day someone who is determined to put an explosive into something they will do it in whatever they can,what are the lawmakers going to do stop you carrying a tin of beans or soda.Mobile phones the list goes on
    so chill out & live your life,as soon as you start worrying about these people then they've won.Besides no lawman is going to take my light of choice from me,i used to be a sprint champion

  4. #4

    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Terrorists plant explosives in just about everything; toys, ink cartridges, bottles, garbages, phones, etc.

    Nothing new.

  5. #5
    Flashaholic* SimulatedZero's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    I bet people who carry flashlights around with them will now be considered suspects though. While there are a fair number of people who carry lights around, they are still the minority by far. Bunch of flashlights being used as explosives + guy walking around downtown with a flashlight in his pocket, could equal trouble. That's the way some people might start thinking unfortunately.
    "Maybe you should just stick to fire on a stick... it's received excellent reviews here - plus it's a time tested design..."

  6. #6
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    I wouldn't worry about it too much. The only worst-case scenario that comes to mind would be having your lights disassembled while traveling through an airport or any other type of checkpoint like a Federal building.

  7. #7
    Flashaholic* dc38's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    If it's a 6V yellow flashlight, (for me,) only the surefire nitrolon comes to mind :/

  8. #8

    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    I would think more likely a 6V floating lantern.
    a standard 6-volt yellow flashlight
    Surefires may be "standard" to you, but I'd bet most people think of something they can find at Walmart. Besides, bigger light = much easier to fit a decent amount of explosive and a switch-operated detonator.

  9. #9
    Flashaholic* dc38's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Benson View Post
    I would think more likely a 6V floating lantern.

    Surefires may be "standard" to you, but I'd bet most people think of something they can find at Walmart. Besides, bigger light = much easier to fit a decent amount of explosive and a switch-operated detonator.
    True! I'd forgotten about those...haven't touched one since I was five lol...

  10. #10
    Flashaholic* CarpentryHero's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Hopefully it is the big lanterns, I think Pelican makes a couple yellow 6 volt flashlights too. Geez, I'm glad no one was killed.
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    Flashaholic* ^Gurthang's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    If the TSA or other Fed security begin screening flashlights for explosives I expect that what they'll do is simply confiscate them like they do knives & lighters. So I'd avoid carrying a SunDrop or other $$$ EDC light if new screening regs are instituted...
    ^G When I reply, threads die....

  12. #12
    *Flashaholic* fyrstormer's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Quote Originally Posted by ^Gurthang View Post
    If the TSA or other Fed security begin screening flashlights for explosives I expect that what they'll do is simply confiscate them like they do knives & lighters. So I'd avoid carrying a SunDrop or other $$$ EDC light if new screening regs are instituted...
    If you demonstrate that the flashlight turns on when you press the button, you should be fine. Generally people won't be willing to detonate a bomb in their hand.

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    Flashaholic* SimulatedZero's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Quote Originally Posted by fyrstormer View Post
    If you demonstrate that the flashlight turns on when you press the button, you should be fine. Generally people won't be willing to detonate a bomb in their hand.
    Lol, I could see that going so well.

    TSA Agent - "Sir, is that a flashlight?"

    CPF Member - "Why yes it is, that is a Surefire 6P with an XM-L upgrade etc... ... ..."

    TSA Agent - "Sir, I'm going to have to ask you to step away from the bag."

    CPF Member - "It's just a flashlight. Here, I'll prove it by turning it on."

    TSA Agent - "Sir, Step Away From The Bag."

    CPF Member - "Just let me turn it on."

    TSA Agent manhandles CPF Member away from bag.

    CPF Member - "JUST LET ME PUSH THE BUTTON, I CAN PROVE IT'S A FLASHLIGHT! I NEED TO
    CLICK THE BUTTON!"

    TSA Agent - "WE HAVE A 10-35 IN PROGRESS REFERENCE 10-79! TAKE HIM DOWN NOW!"
    Last edited by SimulatedZero; 06-01-2012 at 11:06 AM.
    "Maybe you should just stick to fire on a stick... it's received excellent reviews here - plus it's a time tested design..."

  14. #14

    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Quote Originally Posted by fyrstormer View Post
    If you demonstrate that the flashlight turns on when you press the button, you should be fine. Generally people won't be willing to detonate a bomb in their hand.
    Given what other bombers will willing to do, it (sadly) would not surprise me if they did blow it up, thinking they could at least still some damage (and create chaos...). Remember, the people carrying bombs on to aircraft aren't right in the head in the first place...

  15. #15
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    whoa...and I work as a volunteer in my local Salvation Army church. This I have to tell to my fellow Christians.

  16. #16
    *Flashaholic* fyrstormer's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Divine_Madcat View Post
    Given what other bombers will willing to do, it (sadly) would not surprise me if they did blow it up, thinking they could at least still some damage (and create chaos...). Remember, the people carrying bombs on to aircraft aren't right in the head in the first place...
    In the long-term, incidents like that will have to be considered acceptable losses. Terrorism works by trying to make every detail of everyday life a possibility for unexpected injury or death. While working to stop terrorists before they can act is important, beyond that the only way to make terrorism ineffective is to act like it's nothing to panic about.

    In regards to stopping terrorists ahead of time: the reason the TSA does its job so poorly is because they're not allowed to profile people based on their personal history, which means they're essentially left with no other effective tools to predict who intends to commit terrorism. So they are given no reasonable option but to create rules that affect everyone equally, as though everyone is equally likely to be a terrorist. Sometimes being fair to everyone is unfair to everyone.

    Anyway, a couple years ago I brought a few McGizmos on an airplane with me. The TSA guy asked what they were; I said they were flashlights, and he put them in the bin for me to collect after I walked through the metal detector.

  17. #17

    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    The article indicates the light was actually packed with explosives. I was recently briefed at work on this danger, a flashlight matching the description of the one in the article was found at a Chicago freight transportation facility on transport origination from Arizona. The light pictured in the briefing was a Yellow "Everyday" 6-volt flashlight pictured here, http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/ENERGIZER-Industrial-Lantern-1LEF6<
    The IED flashlight found in Chicago was not detonated and its true nature was discovered without injury. I heard there were similar cases in Arizona but didn't know they were reported. It is good to know that no one was seriously hurt in the other incident. I don't know how since, the first thing somebody does when they find a flashlight is pick it up and see if it works. Apparently, though, the explosive charge is not very powerful if the person holding the light while it was detonated only received minor injuries and was treated on the scene. I hope the FBI catches that sicko.
    Last edited by jerrysimons; 06-04-2012 at 03:00 PM. Reason: font

  18. #18
    Flashaholic fishndad's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    They didnt ban shoes from air travel so why ban your EDC.
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  19. #19

    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Thankfully, those lanterns are not EDC.

  20. #20
    Flashaholic* Paul_in_Maryland's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Here's an updated AP article on the threat. Strange that Verizon would publish it under entertainment.verizon.com.

    My lights, all AA, neutral or warm: 3 Fenix TK20s; 2 Malkoff M30WFs; 2 Shiningbeam Romisens (5A); Dereelight XP-G R5 (close enough); UK 4AA incan.

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    Flashaholic* SimulatedZero's Avatar
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    Default Re: A worst nightmare for flashlight lovers/ flash-a-holics.

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul_in_Maryland View Post
    . Strange that Verizon would publish it under entertainment.verizon.com.


    "Maybe you should just stick to fire on a stick... it's received excellent reviews here - plus it's a time tested design..."

  22. #22

    Default Flashlight bombs puzzle Phoenix authorities

    PHOENIX (AP) — Flick the switch on these flashlights and they don't light up. They blow up.
    Three of these bombs have exploded within the last month in the Phoenix area, causing minor injuries to five people and raising fears of more serious ones.
    Police still have no idea who is behind them and have taken the unusual step of putting up 22 billboards across the sprawling metro area to warn residents about discarded flashlights.
    "The nature of the bombings are so random," said Tom Mangan, a special agent at the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Phoenix.
    Mangan said the agency has ruled out any connection to terrorism because the targets have been random and there have been no messages or demands.
    The ATF said the bombs appear to have been made by the same person or people because their design was identical.
    An explosive was placed inside the flashlights with a smaller battery and rigged so that turning it on would send an electrical current that triggered the blast, Mangan said. He declined to identify the explosive material.
    The first bomb was spotted by a passerby on May 13 in a suburb just west of Phoenix. It was sitting behind a palm tree in a strip mall and blew up when it was clicked on.
    The next day, about 10 miles away, a landscaper found a flashlight in an irrigation ditch. It, too, exploded when he flicked the switch, authorities said.
    The third bomb exploded on May 24 at a Salvation Army distribution center near downtown Phoenix and about 11 miles from the first one.
    An employee detonated the device while sorting through donations, forcing 120 people in the store to evacuate. Jon Bierd, production manager at the facility, said the worker suffered a small abrasion to his forehead.
    The Salvation Army stopped accepting donations of flashlights. Since the explosion, employees have not seen any flashlights matching the yellow one seen on the billboards.
    "If we have a flashlight that's heavy or is not empty, then I'd call the Phoenix Police Department. No matter where it is, we do not touch it," said Bierd, who is setting aside any flashlight that is donated.
    In addition to the billboards, police are offering a $10,000 reward for tips that lead to an arrest or conviction.
    Police have received dozens of calls reporting possible flashlight bombs that either turned out to be false alarms or hoaxes, including one from a Goodwill store.
    Meanwhile, the bombings have stopped, though it is unclear whether there are more flashlights out there.
    The attention may have scared them off or they may gain confidence and strike again as the investigation stretches on without an arrest, criminal profiler Gregg McCrary said.
    Details of the case lead the former FBI agent to think the culprit is either a man or two men, with one of them being a dominant leader and the other a follower.
    As for motive, whoever is responsible may be bombing at random for various reasons, said McCrary, who teaches at Marymount University in Virginia.
    "Typically these things are about wanting to feel superior and smarter than other people," he said, adding that they also might revel in the news coverage.
    "There'll be a vicarious thrill or excitement watching news coverage, and it's kind of like: 'Look what I've done.' It's a sense of empowerment that 'I made all this happen,'" he said.
    Mangan said the remnants of the bombs are at a laboratory and being studied for fingerprints and other DNA evidence. The ATF said it will try to trace the materials used in the bombs to see where they were bought.
    Mangan said his agency and others are concerned that the bombings will resume, possibly in a different container. They're also worried that the injuries won't be so minor next time.
    "Anytime any individual uses a bomb, their purpose is to create fear in the community and also to inflict serious injury or death," he said.


    http://news.yahoo.com/flashlight-bom...184552434.html
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  23. #23
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    Default Re: Flashlight bombs puzzle Phoenix authorities

    Modder with a grudge!?

  24. #24
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    Default Flashlight Bombs in Phoenix

    Apparently, "you don't know where it's been" applies to flashlights too.

  25. #25
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    Default Re: Flashlight Bombs in Phoenix

    Wow.... scary.
    One of the victims could be one of us ... or the perpetrator could be one of us...

    Certainly my natural inclination when I see a flashlight is to play with it.

  26. #26

    Default Re: Flashlight Bombs in Phoenix

    Thanks for the heads up!

  27. #27
    Thread Killer Illum's Avatar
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    Shrug Re: Flashlight Bombs in Phoenix

    Quote Originally Posted by Imon View Post
    or the perpetrator could be one of us...
    If this was eight years ago and I lived in Phoenix, you would have had all the evidence you need to incarcerate me. But I've lived in Florida most of my life and before this place became the prime real estate much of the backwoods was full of animals...
    I've built countless modifications of such back in the days. With just a CR123A and a resistor I can ignite any form of fireworks that can fit in the flashlight. It would be weather protected, inconspicuous, and easily locatable at the point of use. By varying the resistance the delay time can be varied. Originally meant to scare off animals at night, I went higher and higher on yield and stopped just short of Mg/KNO3 when I learned of how devestating plastic shrapnel is. This was over eight years ago, over two years before I joined CPF. I always knew eventually someone will use the same idea because fundamentally it is not difficult. I saw new light and is now father of about 30 lights. While I am still intimidated by simple plastic flashlights with side switches found on the side of the road [Bad juju, bad karma, etc], a simple "clearing of the action" usually dissolves that fear.

    I'm willing to bet this guy is using the same concept. Alkalines are pretty inert. An alternative method would be serializing 9V batteries and using an electric fuse [like an Estes Model Rocket Igniter]... but it still begs the question, whats his motive?
    Last edited by Illum; 06-09-2012 at 09:02 PM.

  28. #28
    Flashaholic* T45's Avatar
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    Default Re: Flashlight bombs puzzle Phoenix authorities

    Really disturbing news. Just read about it here. Whoever is behind this needs to be picked up by the authorities very quickly.
    Be a Light In the Universe

  29. #29
    Flashaholic* fisk-king's Avatar
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    Default Flashaholics beware in Phoenix area...

    http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories...06-09-03-31-57

    Apparently someone in the Phoenix area is leaving bombs concealed as flashlights in the surrounding areas. Local police have posted 22 billboards to warn citizens not to operate any discarded flashlights within the city. Hopefully this perp will get caught before someone seriously gets hurt.

    Edit: oops, I should have checked before I posted this in the cafe
    Last edited by fisk-king; 06-11-2012 at 01:42 PM.
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  30. #30
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    Ooo Flashlight bombs puzzle Phoenix authorities

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/f...ities-16531427

    "Three of these [flashlight] bombs have exploded within the last month in the Phoenix area, causing minor injuries to five people and raising fears of more serious ones."
    Light is the activity of what is transparent - Aristotle

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