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You hear it more and more often: that dangerous finds such as weapons, ammunition, and explosives are made while magnet fishing. For many municipalities, this is even a reason to ban magnet fishing. But what about that? Can such an old, rusty bomb from World War II that has been lying in the mud for years just explode? And are there other dangers you can be exposed to while magnet fishing? The answer to both questions is yes, there certainly are. Read on to learn more about the potential dangers of magnet fishing and how to stay safe.

Hey, that looks like a bomb…

What should you do if magnet fishing brings up a bomb, firearm, bullets, grenades, or other explosives? Even though these items may have been in the water for years, they can still be life-threatening. Rusting may have even made them extra unstable. So, follow these steps if you encounter these items:

  • If you see that there is a weapon or explosive attached to your magnet, don’t pull it ashore, but gently lower it back into the water.
  • If you only find out on dry land that it is an explosive, leave it alone.
  • Call the police.
  • Warn bystanders to keep their distance.
  • Do not leave, but wait at a safe distance until the police arrive.
Magnet fishing can be dangerous when you find a firearm


Besides bringing explosives to the surface, there are other things that require you to be careful and use common sense:

  • Watch out if you have a very heavy object attached to your fishing magnet. Get someone to help you bring it up. Be careful when attaching your fish magnet to a car to pull a heavy object out of the water. If the rope snaps in the process, it can shoot off in any direction and cause considerable damage.
  • Your find may have sharp edges, such as from rusting, and splinters that may jump off. So, always use good magnet fishing gloves. If you are fishing with a strong magnet, be careful when releasing it. You wouldn’t be the first to get your fingers caught between the magnet and the object!
  • Stop magnet fishing if there is a thunderstorm. Fishing magnets are good conductors.
  • Never go magnet fishing where pipes run across the bottom of the canal or river. Pay close attention to the signs posted along the bank.
  • People with pacemakers should stay away from strong fishing magnets.
Is magnet fishing dangerous? Only when you find certain items.

Safe magnet fishing

If each of the above points has you thinking ‘Yeah, that kinda makes sense,’ then you’re good to go. The most important tip for safe magnet fishing is to use common sense. If you then also follow the tips below, then you can have a wonderful afternoon of magnet fishing with peace of mind.

  • When you start magnet fishing, don’t go for the heaviest magnet right away. Learn the tricks of the trade with a light magnet first.
  • Get a rope that matches the strength of your magnet. If you buy a fishing magnet set, the seller has already taken this into account.
  • Also make sure the rest of your gear is in order: good gloves, a magnet fishing hook, magnet fishing rope, and bins or bags to dispose of your finds. Just starting out with magnet fishing? Opt for a magnet fishing kit.
  • Don’t go magnet fishing alone and make sure you have a phone with you!

Have fun magnet fishing!

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