RAHWAY, NJ — A local elementary school was evacuated June 14 out of an “overabundance of caution” after the city police department received a suspicious call about a bomb in the area, authorities said.
Roosevelt Elementary School, which houses students in pre-K to sixth grade, was evacuated for about 30 minutes after police received the call around 9:45 a.m., authorities said. The caller alleged a bomb was located in the area of the 300 block of Lake Avenue, according to a statement posted on the Rahway Police Department’s Facebook page.
“I can’t go into the specifics into what the caller stated,” Capt. Dawn Rodger said in a phone interview. “But from the onset, it didn’t have specifics and it didn’t really seem authentic.”
Still, police took the call seriously, Rodger said. Authorities and school officials checked the school and surrounding area and determined that the building was safe.
“These are things we are prepared for,” Rodger said, adding that the police department and schools have a “fantastic relationship.”
“Thankfully, today was something that was deemed to be a false alarm, but we used it as a training,” she said.
The call was traced to Colonia, police said, and the Woodbridge Police Department located the male caller. No arrest was made once they found him, said Woodbridge Police Capt. Scott Kuzma.
“From our end, it was a medical call,” Kuzma said in a phone interview, adding that he was limited in what he could tell reporters. “I think his rambling mentioned a bomb, but there was no direct threat made.”
Schools in other nearby municipalities have also received bogus threats, causing police to respond.
Last month, Hillside High School went into lockdown after authorities said a male student had called police and falsely claimed he had a gun.
In Union, a rumor was spread about a Snapchat posting alluding to a shooting at Burnet Middle School, the building’s principal said in a phone message to parents. However, no such posting was found, and the student who started the rumor was identified, the principal stated.
The Union Police Department was present at the middle school the following day as an extra precaution
There are about 630 students at Roosevelt Elementary School, according to state data from 2017.