MOUNT PLEASANT, S. C. – A person who raised alarm about a possible “dirty bomb” on a container ship approaching the port of Charleston, South Carolina, was questioned Thursday after a search found nothing dangerous.
Coast guard Lt. James Zorn said the Charleston office received a report of a “dirty bomb” on board of the Maersk Memphis container ship around 8 am on Wednesday. The ship docked about a half hour later.
Zorn said the coast guard contact with other federal, state and local governments and the establishment of a unified command ordered the evacuation of the Wando Terminal of the South Carolina State Ports Authority in Mount Pleasant and a 1-meter safety zone around the dock on the Cooper River.
A “dirty bomb” is not a traditional nuclear weapon, but an explosive with radioactive or radiation-contaminated material. By 3:30 pm Thursday, officials had scanned four suspicious containers on board the ship and determined that there was no danger.
The terminal was the resumption of normal activities. No injuries were reported.
A person who reported that a threat has been arrested and is being questioned. Zorn is not about details on the name of the person, nor any organization was the ask the person. No costs are reported.