Bomb disposal experts and police sped to the banks of the Carron in Falkirk yesterday afternoon after a report that a wartime hand grenade had been found.
But it was almost six hours before the Explosive Ordinance Disposal squad were able to declare the all clear, because the water level made it difficult to retrieve the suspect object or examine it safely.
It took until 8pm to find the “grenade” was a false alarm.
One local theory is that the object may have been either a replica grenade or a wartime empty grenade casing - many civilian factories were involved in wartime munitions production (in both world wars).
Last month a real Second World War grenade was found by the River Ouse down south, after apparently being “hooked” by somebody involved in magnet fishing - in which a strong magnet on a line is used to “fish” for potentially valuable metal objects like coins.
That emergency forced police to close a lock gate and clear the area while bomb experts safely exploded the grenade.
Wartime grenades (Mills Bombs) from either the First or Second World War can often be found - contents removed - as souvenir curios, but if found in the open can still pose a threat.