There are some types of fun the average American isn’t allowed to enjoy, and it’s something that no one is working toward changing. In fairness, that type of fun tends to involve blowing things up, and I can see why it makes the Air Force’s recent goof even more amusing, and a little scary.
It seems the Air Force has misplaced a box of grenade rounds and they would really, really like them back.
The U.S. Air Force lost a box of grenade rounds in northwest North Dakota that fell off a Humvee earlier this month, and now is seeking the public’s help in locating the explosives.
A 91st Missile Wing Security Forces team from the Minot Air Force Base lost the ammunition container on May 1 while traveling between missile sites in Mountrail County, according to a news release the Air Force issued late Friday
The team was traveling on rough gravel roads about four miles west of Parshall when the back hatch of the vehicle opened, and an ammunition container fell out, the Air Force said.
The ammunition is considered safe as long as the container is intact, said Lt. Col. Jamie Humphries, a spokesman for the Minot Air Force Base. However, damage to the container or its contents could lead to an explosion or injury, he said.
If the ammunition is located and is damaged, the area should be evacuated and people should call 911 or the Minot Munitions Reporting Hotline at 701-723-7909.
The missing ammunition is a belt of grenade rounds, contained in a green metal ammo container, that is meant for use with an MK19 machine gun grenade launcher, the Mountrail County Sheriff’s Office said Friday afternoon. The ammunition will not operate in any other launching device.
The Air Force Office of Special Investigations is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the recovery of the munitions. The Air Force issued its first public statement on the lost ammunition about 7:30 p.m. Friday, 10 days after the explosives went missing and hours after Halvorson first issued a press release.
Halvorson said in a statement that his news release was prompted by “the lack of information being released by the Air Force on this loss and his concern for the safety of the citizens in the area.”
Still, this is so not good from the Air Force’s perspective.
I can’t help but wonder what took so long to recognize the ammo was missing. My guess is that they identified it as missing early but have been scouring the base looking for it first. Having exhausted that search, they’re now putting the word out that their grenade ammo for a belt-fed launcher has gone AWOL.
Of course, anyone reading this who finds it should call the sheriff’s department at 701-628-2975.
In the meantime, I feel really, really bad for whoever was in charge of the transportation of that ammo. Though it is not a career-making moment for him or her, the military tends to frown on missing ordinance as a general rule.
Just remember, ladies and gentlemen, that the same military that just lost a box of explosive ammunition is the same military that are the only ones responsible enough to be trusted with AR-15s. Never mind that they don’t actually use AR-15s, but still.
Talk about a major whoops.