Bomb squad declare ‘suspicious device’ in Southport safe

LATEST @ 4.00 PM | A suspicious device found inside a toilet block on the Gold Coast today has been declared safe.

A member of the public discovered the object inside a public toilet block in Carey Park on Marine Parade in Southport just after 11.30am on Thursday.

It forced stores in the nearby Australia Fair Shopping Centre to be evacuated as a precaution as police officers swarmed the area.


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The Brisbane bomb squad was also called in to examine the device, with authorities confirming it was “taken apart” and the “threat diminished” just before 4.00pm.

Acting Inspector Chris Smith said the object was made to “look like a bomb” with some wires that had been taped together.

“It’s extremely frustrating, this is a very busy part of the Gold Coast,” he said.

“There are a number of police resources that needed to be utilised for this incident… We have to use the best resources we have to make this area safe.”

Road blocks in the area have since been lifted with traffic now returning to normal.

Police are now reviewing CCTV footage in a bid to try and track down who may have planted the device in the toilet block.

Investigations are continuing.

EARLIER @ 12.00 PM | A major incident is unfolding on a busy Gold Coast street this afternoon following the discovery of a suspicious device.

Police rushed to Marine Parade in Southport just after 11.30am, after a member of the public found the suspect device in a public toilet block in Carey Park.

An exclusion zone has been set up around Marine Parade, near Australia Fair Shopping Centre.

Senior Sergeant Leigh McGuinness says some stores in the centre have been evacuated, with officers continuing to liaise with management.

“We take all suspect devices seriously until we can prove otherwise… but we do have a number of police on scene,” Sergeant McGuinness said.

“Some of the shops have been evacuated to er on the side of caution and the management of Australia Fair Shopping Centre have been cooperating with our requests.”

PHOTO | Marcus Greig

The bomb squad have now arrived on scene from Brisbane to examine the device, with police urging everyone to avoid the area.

“In terms of numbers we have at least 30 – 40  personnel on scene managing this incident,” Senior Sergeant McGuinness said.

“We’re asking pedestrians and traffic to avoid the Gold Coast Highway northbound in the vicinity of Marine Parade.”

PHOTO | Marcus Greig

According to the Department of Transport and Main Roads, all lanes on Marine Parade have been affected, with long delays expected.

Investigations are continuing.

 

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