Live High Explosive Mortar Found on Maui Wedged in a Tree

PC: Maui Police Department

An Explosive Ordnance Disposal team from the Army rendered a high explosive mortar safe after it was found wedged in the trunk of a tree in South Maui earlier this week.

The incident was reported on Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021 when security personnel with Haleakalā Ranch contacted police after locating the device. The report indicated the mortar was wedged in the tree in a field area inland of the Piʻilani Highway and south of the Kīhei Police Station.

The Army EOD was contacted and made aware of the finding on Wednesday, but due to the isolation of the ordnance and the fact that it was secured behind fences and locked gates, arrangements were made to fly out on Thursday, Dec. 9, 2021, to render the mortar safe.

On Thursday EOD personnel removed the mortar from the tree, and upon further inspection, found it to be a live 60 MM High Explosive mortar with the safety pin and primer still intact. The team also reported the high explosives were beginning to seep out as the mortar was rusty and eroding.

The mortar was taken to a location further away from the Kīhei Police Station, where it was rendered safe without incident, according to Maui police.

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