Everything goes in circles: Cash Dye Bombs

dye stained bank notes Back when I was a spotty faced bank teller, banks in Australia had stopped using cash dye bombs.

“Spoil the prize, and you spoil the crime.” was the theory with dye bombs.

How cash dye bombs were used was fairly simple:

  • bank robber demands the cash from the bank teller.
  • teller scoops cash out of cash draw, along with dye bomb, which has automatically armed; into the robbers bag.
  • robber runs out the door with the loot.
  • dye bomb explodes in robbers bag, denying the robber the cash prize.

That’s what happened in a robbery.

But during a normal day, bank tellers were accidently arming the dye bombs.  Which would then explode, covering the bank’s cash, and possibly the teller, in indelible dye.

This would leave the cash unusable.

The bank’s would then ship the “faulty” bank notes along to the Reserve Bank of Australia for replacement.

The Reserve Bank eventually had enough of these accidental discharges, and said “Enough.  We’ll not accept dye covered notes for replacement.”

Which killed the use of dye bombs.

Proving everything goes in circles, I was reading the Reserve Bank’s Annual Report 2009, and see that the Reserve Bank is once-again accepted dye-stained notes.

What next?  The re-arming of Bank Managers?

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