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Warning to clueless geocachers after Nelson bomb alert

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Police and the NZ Defence Force are urging people setting up geocaches to put more thought into where they leave them, after one was treated as a suspect device in Nelson.

The call follows a security alert in Nelson on Wednesday that closed several streets while an army bomb disposal unit raced to the scene.

Geocaching is an internet-based treasure hunt using GPS co-ordinates, which began in the US in September 2000.

Geocaches are devices fitted with GPS, hidden in containers, the co-ordinates of which can be found online and the challenge is to find them.

Sometimes clues are hidden in objects left in plain sight.

“A geocache clue was placed in what appeared to be an explosive device and left on a Nelson park bench on 7 December, sparking a Police and NZDF response, which led to significant disruption including street closures,” police said today.

“Police don’t want to spoil people’s fun, but we’d like them to avoid making geocaches that look suspicious – especially if they look like explosive devices.

“Please apply some common sense to where you put them and be aware that people will come looking for them and may be disrupting others, especially in urban areas.”

Geocaches cannot be left on private property without permission of the landowner.

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