NORRISTOWN -- The Montgomery County Sheriff Department's bomb disposal unit Thursday afternoon responded to reports of explosive materials found at a research company in Upper Providence.

Franklin Research, which does some blasting in the performance of its contracts, reported that a retiring worker was cleaning out his work area and found 12 old unused vials of explosive charge materials such as TNT, according to Sheriff John P. Durante.

"These things had been sitting around so long that the chemicals had deteriorated and began crystallizing," said Durante. "Any jolt would have set them off."

The bomb unit safely secured the vials and removed them from the company in the first block of Highland Avenue, said Durante.

The materials will be taken to an unspecified site and destroyed.

"It's just incredible how much of this stuff is out there and a lot of people just do not realize how dangerous it can be," said Durante.

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