Military flare washes ashore on Miami Beach

Bomb squad closes off beach to remove device

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. – A military flare washed ashore Wednesday, briefly closing off a portion of Miami Beach.

Lifeguards on duty called the Miami Beach Police Department about 11 a.m. after finding the device on the beach. Police officers cordoned off the area as the bomb squad removed the device.

Sky 10 was flying above the beach near Ocean Drive and Ninth Street, where the metallic canister was lodged in the sand.

The writing on the device said, "Do not handle, contains phosphorous, may cause..."

All the police activity took tourists off guard.

"They made everyone evacuate," said Laura Hege, a tourist from North Carolina. "Now they’re having bomb squad come out and everything."

A police drone was used to photograph the device. Officials said the device was not dangerous but they said they acted with an abundance of caution. 

"It's a burning flare. The Coast Guard routinely drops them. It’s a marker flare where they use them for spotting vessels and aircraft at night," said Officer Sean Klahm, of the Miami-Dade County Police Department Bomb Squad.

It was unclear whether the flare had been used or still could have ignited.