December 06, 2008

Attention Wal-Mart Shoppers: BOOM!

There's another Wal-Mart going up on what used to be the site of a US Steel plant between Route 146 and the Blackstone River here in Worcester. Construction ran into a little snag yesterday, though, when three unexploded 8" shells were found buried there:

Artillery shells found buried

By Steven H. Foskett Jr.

Explosives experts and local fire and police personnel spent several hours yesterday trying to figure out what to do with old artillery shells found by construction workers on the site of the former U.S. Steel complex on Tobias Boland Way.

A state police bomb squad spent most of the afternoon and early evening on the vast construction site, which is slated to become a Wal-Mart retail store...

"It appears to be old ordnance," District Fire Chief Ronald Fritz said. "There were a couple of eight-inch shells, about 16 inches tall. They've been there for years."

He said the state bomb squad was called in, and said they were trying to determine what to do with the ordnance — take it somewhere, or detonate it on site...
Here's my suggestion: leave the shells where they are. Wal-Mart's effects on a community are often worse than a couple of small explosive devices going off and we've already got several superstores in the area. Besides, wouldn't it be just a little bit more exciting to shop at Wal-Mart if you knew that doing so could result in grievous bodily harm at any moment? I haven't heard that the Valley Stream, NY superstore is closing down just because of a few tramplings. Why should a couple of old artillery shells be bad for business in Worcester?

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