Explosives stolen from car spark police search

A detonator
A detonator
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An urgent investigation has been launched after explosives were stolen from a car in the borough.

Offenders broke into a car on Astley Street in Leigh at around 7.15am on Saturday and took items including a bag containing six detonators of the kind used on railways to warn workers on the tracks of approaching trains.

A detonator used on the railways

A detonator used on the railways

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Police found the bag in a garden in Chapel Street but the explosives are still missing.

Officers are asking residents to look out for the detonators, which are yellow and around the size of a £1 coin. They may be in a red casing.

Police think the car was broken into some time between 12.10am and 7am on Saturday.

Inspector Frank Hall of GMP’s Wigan borough said: “Although we’ve been carrying out our enquiries, we haven’t yet found them and want you to know what they look like in case you come across them – our priority to ensure your safety.

“Obviously they are bright in colour so may appear attractive to children but we must make sure everyone knows these are not a toy and should not be handled.

“They do need a significant force to detonate them, however, if you see them please do not touch them and call us immediately so we can deal with them in the safest way possible.

“We are working with a timeframe of around seven hours however, due to it being overnight, there wouldn’t have been that many people around so if you did see people acting suspiciously or something that didn’t quite feel right in the area we’re talking about, it’s important you get in touch.”

Anyone with information should contact police on 101 quoting reference number 611 of 27/01/18 or the independent charity Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555 111.