Roger W. Hurd, a nuclear plant engineer detained yesterday after a pipe bomb was found in the bed of his truck, told Arizona police that he doesn't know how the 6-inch-long device got there. The discovery of the bomb sparked a lockdown of the Palo Verde Nuclear Generating Station, the largest such facility in the US, reports the Arizona Republic.
Hurd, a 61-year-old contract worker who said he usually drives a motorcycle to work, was stopped at the first of many checkpoints, indicating that plant security "worked the way it should have worked," according to a plant officer. The device would have affected a 20-foot radius, and authorities see no indication that terrorism is involved. Such low-level threat events are said to occur "every few days" at power plants across the country.