Bomb threat shuts down Highway 149 for several hours, passengers react

Mar 9, 2016 12:55 PM by News Staff

Highway 149 between Oroville and Chico is back open Wednesday morning following a bomb threat on a B-line bus that stopped the vehicle in its tracks and shut down the highway for some time.

Passengers on a B-line bus sat in the middle of Highway 149 this evening after authorities say a passenger made some sort of reference to a bomb.

It's not clear exactly what was said, but it was enough for the bus driver to trigger a silent alarm and await the arrival of law enforcement.

Kael Heath, a passenger on the bus, said he was startled when the bus began to pull over on the freeway.

"This was a rather scary experience,” he said. “I don't know if a lot of people didn't notice what was going on or people just didn't think much of it. I kind of got a little bit of a bad feeling whenever they walked on."

Heath said he never heard the word bomb mentioned, but he says the gentleman who got on the bus did make some threatening statements.

“I was near the back of the bus so it was difficult for me to hear,” he said. “I did know that one of them made mention of a knife, a two and a half inch knife that was in his pants pocket."

Law enforcement isn't releasing a lot of details because it's still under investigation.

California Highway Patrol isn't able to say if the bomb squad actually found anything on the bus or not.

All of the passengers were removed from the bus and taken to a secure location.

We do know that two of the passengers were taken into custody.

"We have multiple investigators that are interviewing all the passengers and also interviewing the suspects,” Lt. Marc Stokes of the Butte County Sheriff’s Office said. “There were two that were taken into custody. One we believe doesn't have anything to do with it. Maybe just like wrong place, wrong time."

Stokes said there were about 20 people on the bus and all of the passengers were sent home.


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