Explosions rock the Boston marathon
April 16, 2013
Two explosions detonated within yards of the finishing line for the Boston Marathon on April 15. According to the New York Times, the race had drawn 23,000 participants from all over the word and nearly half a million spectators along the route.
Explosions leave three dead, over 100 injured
The race was nearing conclusion, as over three quarters of the participants had already crossed the finish line, when the detonations began shortly before 3 p.m. local time. The two small bombs went off within 13 seconds of each other and had apparently been placed in trash cans before the race.
Jarrett Sylvester, a 26 year old East Boston resident who was approaching the finish line when the bombs went off, said he initially didn't realize it was an explosion, reports The New York Times.
"The first one went off, I thought it was a big celebratory thing, and I just kept going," Sylvester told The Times. "And then the second one went off, and I saw debris fly in the air. And I realized it was a bomb at that point. And I just took off and ran in the complete opposite direction."
Three people were killed in connection with the blast, including an 8 year old child. Hundreds of others were injured with some requiring amputations.
As of the morning following the attack, the FBI has taken the lead in the investigation. There are still no suspects in the case, though an area home was extensively searched by law enforcement in connection to the events at the marathon, reports Fox News Boston.
The event has been classified by federal authorities as an act of terrorism, though they do not yet know if this event was planned abroad by foreign nationals, or at home by disgruntled citizens.
Police have confirmed that they have an unexploded device in their possession, according to CNN, and a local official who has been briefed publicly stated there were in fact two unexploded devices found by law enforcement.
Cell phone use suspended
The Associated Press reports that a local official had confirmed that cellular phone service was briefly cut off in the city of Boston to prevent further remote detonations. Verizon and Sprint Nextel deny any such request was made, but did note that the sharp uptick in call volume may have periodically overloaded network capacity and lead to some difficult placing calls.
Land lines continued to function normally, and runners carrying international calling cards were able to reach out to friends and family around the world to confirm their safety.