Bomb squad called after fake missile launcher spotted on Thames barge

A dummy in a balaclava was also on the canal boat

Updated: 
Bomb squad called after fake missile launcher spotted on Thames barge

Bomb disposal experts were called this week after a dummy wearing a balaclava was spotted on a boat on the Thames with a fake missile launcher on its roof.

A spooked passerby called police after spotting the creepy-looking dummy and launcher on the barge in Reading.

According to the Metro, a police spokesman said: "Thames Valley Police received a report from a member of the public about a suspected weapon on a canal boat in Caversham last night.

"Officers attended and conducted a search of the area, and the boat was located. The reported weapon was found to be purely ornamental.

"Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) were also informed and are satisfied it was not a live device."

Bomb squad called after fake missile launcher spotted on Thames barge

The statement continued: "The canal boat was moored near a children's play area in Christchurch Meadows, where the River Thames flows through Reading.

"After approaching the boat, police and the bomb disposal unit inspected the missile and confirmed the deadly-looking weapon was a dummy."

The prank did not go down well with local residents. Speaking to the Daily Mail, one local said: "What a stupid thing to put on top of a boat in a town centre.

"Goodness knows what possessed the boat owner - didn't they realise the panic it would spread?

"We're hoping the police take the time to have a word with them and ask them to remove it.

"It's not funny at all in this day and age, with all the horrible things involving terrorists."

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