LAKEWOOD — A device found at a recycling center on Tuesday night turned out to be a non-threatening item from the 1960s.

The area around the Atlantic Coast Recycling Center in the Lakewood Industrial Park was searched, after a pipe bomb-like device was found by an employee and reported to Lakewood Police around 8:10 p.m. K9 units from the State Police and Ocean County Sheriff's Department trained to detect explosive devices were called in, and a wide area around the facility on New Hampshire Avenue was closed off.

After 90 minutes, investigators determined the device to have been made in the 1960s, possibly used with flares or fuses, and that it may have been unknowingly been brought to the recycling center by one of the companies that has its loads for sorting.

The Ocean County Prosecutor's Office and Lakewood Chaverim also responded to the incident.

Lakewood Police Lt. Greg Staffordsmith said the department was appreciative of the vigilance of the employee who reported seeing the device and demonstrating that "see something, say something" is more than a catchy phrase.

"It is a concept that we as law enforcement rely heavily upon everyday. Informed, alert citizens play a critical role in keeping our nation safe. The Lakewood Police Department is committed to strengthening the security of all those who reside in our town or travel our roadways, but is not without the help from people who have the courage to report things that don't 'look or feel right,' Staffordsmith said.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ.

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