More on bicycle bombs

My bicycle bombs story (see previous blog and comments – http://john-adams.co.uk/?p=122 ) was also aired on the BBC Today Programme and the BBC World Service on 30 July.

I still haven’t received any convincingly documented case of a bicycle bomb, in the form of the frame packed with explosives, killing anyone anywhere in the world.

One commentator says, “I have heard of a bicycle used as a bomb reported to be in Sofia c.1948. The reports are of the saddle being ejected by some 300 feet but the bike remained rideable.”

The trick in making an effective pipe bomb (see How to make a pipe bomb – http://www.linkbase.org/make-pipe-bomb/) appears to lie in fixing caps that are stronger than the pipe itself. Otherwise the pipe won’t explode. The caps (or the saddle) pop off and you have an interesting firework.

I’ve had a number of responses indicating that the anti-terrorist bureaucratic paranoia I complain about is not confined to Parliament Square in London.

More comments/examples would be welcome. It would be interesting to see just how widespread the ban on cycle parking is, and the extent to which it is rooted in anti-terrorist paranoia or simple anti-cycle prejudice.

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  1. Audrius Sapola says:

    It’s a funny article about false alarm related to bicycles and pipe bombs:


    I wonder it this could actually be in some way related to the restrictions around Wensminster 🙂

  2. Andrew Curry says:

    There was a discussion on this theme on the urbancyclist mail list a couple of years ago. No-one there could identify an instance of the frame of a bicycle being used as a repository for a bomb. The closest was that the IRA had packed a bomb into a pannier bag. But this doesn’t justify the ‘no bicycles’ security blanket around Whitehall – it just requires a rule that you must take your bags with you.

    Andrew Curry

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