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Device found on sea shore causes tension

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CAUSE FOR PANIC: The ‘Sealed Automatic Marine Streamer Recovery Device’ found on the beach at Mattu village near Udupi on Tuesday.
CAUSE FOR PANIC: The ‘Sealed Automatic Marine Streamer Recovery Device’ found on the beach at Mattu village near Udupi on Tuesday.

Staff Correspondent

Mattu (Udupi district): The people of Mattu, a village about 8 km from Udupi and located close to Arabian Sea, were caught unawares when they found an “explosive like device” on Tuesday. Speculations were rife that it could be meant for military use. However, a search through Google on the net revealed that it was nothing but a “Sealed Automatic Marine Streamer Recovery Device” used in ships.

It was found by the people of Mattu, early on Tuesday morning. Inspector of Coastal Security Police, H.D. Kulkarni, who was on the spot, told presspersons that the device was found on the sea shore. A person from the village lifted it and put it on the beach. “We contacted the Coast Guard who directed us to inform the matter to district administration. We have done that, too” he said.

A couple of officers from NCC Naval Unit No. 6 also inspected the device. Superintendent of Police Devajyoti Ray told The Hindu: “We don’t know what exactly this device is. We have informed Deputy Commissioner and have warned the people not to venture near the device. We have informed the Indian Navy about it.”

Some people in the village poured buckets of water on the device to “keep it cool”.

As confusion mounted, a Google search for Geospace Technologies and Model SRD –500S was undertaken which revealed the following: “The SRD – 500S is the latest generation marine streamer recovery device. Operation of the device is simple and effective. For regular oil filled streamers, SRD-500S recovery devices are installed at regular intervals along with streamer. If the streamer is severed or becomes detached from the tow vessel and sinks, the recovery device automatically detonates at 70 psi water pressure and releases compressed CO{-2} into a flotation bag. After the SRD bag inflates, the streamer floats with the SRD to surface for recovery.”

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