A Utah elementary school was evacuated on Monday after a custodian discovered a pipe bomb on the roof of the building.
No injuries were reported after the school evacuated 800 students and faculty members, and a bomb squad detonating the device.
In a statement, Mountain View Elementary School confirmed the PVC bomb did include a small amount of explosive material. A custodian removed the bomb from the roof of the school and then alerted the school’s principal, who contacted the authorities.
“Why he did that and where he took it, we’re not sure. He put himself in a dangerous situation,”Christopher Williams, the school district's spokesman, told Reuters. A different custodian has been on the same roof earlier Monday, but hadn't noticed the bomb or any suspicious activity, Williams said.
Layton Police Department Lt. Shawn Horton said the unidentified custodian initially brought the device into the school, but by the time police arrived, it had been moved to the school’s parking lot, the Salt Lake City Tribune reports.
Williams said Mountain View never received a bomb threat, including the 85 other schools in the Davis school district; the school has no history of reported bombs on its property, and officials said they don't have any leads so far on who left the pipe bomb.
“The Layton Police Department has opened an official investigation into the incident," the school said, in a statement. "At this time, there is no information about how long the device had been on the school’s roof … or the motive for it happening at our school.”
Hill Air Force Base bomb-sniffing dogs searched the school grounds and uncovered no additional bombs. In the meantime, district maintenance workers have been told to thoroughly examine the roof as an extra safety precaution.
During the bomb sweep, students and faculty were evacuated to the LDS Northridge Skate Center meeting house.
Despite the nature of the incident, Williams told Reuters that the school was well-prepared.
“We drill a lot for fire, intruders, disasters. That means when there’s a real situation like today, everything goes smoothly. Under the circumstances, things went as well as they could," he said.
Parents of Mountain View students praised the school's officials on the district’s official Facebook page.
"When I went and got my third grader she didn’t even know what happened!” Katey Wells said. “They were so calm and collected. So happy with how all of this was handled."
“The school did a great job today,” Scott Owens commented. “I can not stress how proud I am of Mountain View."
The Utah school said it would be operating on normal hours Tuesday, adding the appropriate agencies have determined that the building is safe.