Nashville, December 25: An explosion using a parked vehicle was reported in Downtown area of Nashville on Friday, Christmas Day. The blast took place at around 6:30 am, the police department said, adding that no injuries were initially reported. In a statement issued later on its official Twitter handle, the Metro Nashville Police Department said the explosion appeared to be an "intentional act".
A probe was launched in Downtown area, with blockades imposed at some points of the region. Vehicular movement was partially affected following the blast. The central agencies - Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) has also taken cognisance of the case and initiated an investigation. Afghanistan: Explosion in Kabul's PD5 Area, 9 Killed, 6 Injured.
"MNPD, FBI and ATF investigating the 6:30 am explosion on 2nd Ave N linked to a vehicle. This appears to have been an intentional act. Law enforcement is closing downtown streets as investigation continues (sic)," the police department said.
See Metro Nashville PD's Tweet
MNPD, FBI & ATF investigating the 6:30 a.m. explosion on 2nd Ave N linked to a vehicle. This appears to have been an intentional act. Law enforcement is closing downtown streets as investigation continues. pic.twitter.com/YOfMTaKmTH
— Metro Nashville PD (@MNPDNashville) December 25, 2020
Black smoke and flames were seen early Friday billowing from the area, which is packed with bars, restaurants and other retail establishments and is known as the heart of downtown Nashvilles tourist scene.
Buildings shook in the immediate area and beyond after a loud boom was heard. The Metro Nashville Office of Emergency Management told Nashville television station WKRN that a parked recreational vehicle exploded and damaged several buildings. No injuries were immediately reported.
The station also quoted officials as saying the explosion did not seem suspicious. The fire department sent out a tweet asking residents and others to avoid the area.
Buck McCoy, who lives near the area, posted videos on Facebook that show water pouring down the ceiling of his home. Alarms blare in the background and cries of people in great distress ring in the background. A fire is visible in the street outside. McCoy said the windows of his home were entirely blown out.
“All my windows, every single one of them got blown into the next room. If I had been standing there it would have been horrible,” he said. “It felt like a bomb. It was that big,” he told The Associated Press. "There were about four cars on fire. I don't know if it was so hot they just caught on fire, and the trees were all blown apart,” he said.
(With agency inputs)