Wednesday, 03. September 2014
15. 05. 14. - 16:00
A company in Germany sparked a major terror alert after it organised a team-building scavenger hunt for its 90 employees, by planting fake bombs for workers to hunt down.
Instead of being the fun team-building exercise that was planned, it turned into a mass police call out after not just one, but dozens of worried locals called police to report suspicious packages which they believed to be live bombs.
Police spokesman Stefan Osterhagen said: "We were not getting one call, we were getting dozens of calls reporting bombs all over the city. It seemed we were going to have a major disaster on our hands as we called in bomb disposal experts, put firemen and hospitals on standby, and sent police officers to cordon off each site where a bomb had been spotted."
He criticised the organisers as "foolish" for failing to foresee the likely consequences of their action, saying they were working flat out to deal with panic calls, seal off areas and evacuate people.
The story was even more puzzling after eye-witnesses reported to detectives that the bombs had been planted by people in police uniforms, unaware that these were people in fancy dress that were all part of the team building treasure hunt.
After evacuating parts of the city centre police were able to identify the packages as harmless, if realistic, looking fakes, and give the all clear.
They were later able to solve the mystery when scavenger hunters with their maps and coordinates turned up at the scene, playing the role of 'bomb hunters', together with their 'guide' - a man in a fancy dress police costume.
The unnamed company now faces charges for organising the unauthorised events, wearing police uniforms in public, and a hefty bill for the police operation.
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