Discovery of dynamite leads to evacuation in Yarnell

Posted: Updated:
(Source: Yavapai County Sheriff's Office) (Source: Yavapai County Sheriff's Office)

The discovery of more than two dozen sticks of dynamite prompted the evacuation of a number of homes and businesses in Yarnell.

On Wednesday, May 17, around 2 p.m., two men walked into the Yarnell Sheriff’s sub-station and told a YCSO supervisor they had found a box of dynamite while hiking in the Skull Valley area.

During their hike, the men said they had come across a partially exposed metal lock box. After taking the box home, they cut the lock off and opened the box to find it contained several sticks of dynamite.

The two men then brought the box to the Yarnell Sheriff’s sub-station.

Deputies placed the box in an unoccupied section of the station parking lot.

But due to the risk of detonation, several nearby areas were evacuated, including the Yarnell Justice Court, a local church, an access road, and a few homes in the vicinity.

The Department of Public Safety bomb squad was notified and asked to respond. 

Just after 5 p.m., the DPS bomb squad arrived and determined there were about 25 one-pound sticks of dynamite in the box.

Officers placed the box in a controlled environment for a ride to a remote area north of Peeples Valley. At that location, with Yarnell fire officials standing by, the dynamite was detonated and rendered safe. 

The origin of the dynamite is unknown at this time. 

The Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office offers the following advice regarding explosives:

-When finding obvious explosives, you should NOT move the object

-report the content and location to law enforcement officials.

Do not bring such items into population centers if at all possible. Law enforcement officers will always assume any explosive material has a potential to detonate no matter the apparent condition of the material. Public safety is the no.1 priority in such instances. 
Citizens can contact the Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office with information or questions at 928-771-3260 or the YCSO website:

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