Shattered Glass Fills Streets of Chelsea, N.Y., After Explosion

Twenty-nine people were injured, as well as many businesses damaged, following an explosion Saturday at 8:30 p.m. on West 23rd Street in New York’s Manhattan neighborhood of Chelsea, located on the West Side of the city. The explosion caused shattered glass from windows and vehicles to fill the streets, and left many businesses closed Sunday due to the crime scene investigation. Another bomb was also found on 27th Street but did not detonate, and both have since been sent to the FBI lab in Quantico, Va., for further investigation.

“Well … I think being on site, you can get a sense of the damage, which was really much more extensive than I had anticipated. The physical structures next to the site of the explosion were significantly damaged. Across the street, down the block, glass was shattered,” says Gov. Andrew Cuomo as cited in the interview transcript on his website.

“We got lucky all the way around, thank God,” says Duane Spearman, owner of Allerton Glass Co. in the Bronx. The area of the explosion “ … is always crowded,” he said Monday morning in a phone interview. “Somebody could have gotten killed for sure.”

Chelsea is described as a vibrant neighborhood, lined with restaurants, subway stations, businesses and art galleries, possibly leaving many shattered storefronts in the wake of the explosion.

“We smelled something, like an intense sulfur smell, and saw smoke coming out of this building. I saw pieces of metal—not large, but not small either. A few friends of mine saw glass there,” says Chelsea resident Danilo Gabrielli in an interview, who was watching TV in his 23rd Street apartment at the time of the explosion. “It’s a real quiet neighborhood—not like the center of the city or the Wall Street area. It’s tiny bars, where you go to grab a drink, grab a bite to eat, watch a film. We were worried.”

A third bomb was found and accidentally detonated by a robot at a train station in Elizabeth, N.J., on Sunday night subsequent to a pipe-bomb explosion on Saturday in Seaside Park, N.J., at a charity run. A total of five explosive devices were found at the train station, and investigation is underway to determine if the incidents are linked.

No international terrorist group has claimed the bombings in Chelsea, but suspect Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28, has been detained in Linden, N.J. as of Monday morning following a shootout with police. Rahami is a U.S. citizen of Afghanistan whose last known address was in Elizabeth, N.J., the site of Sunday’s explosion.

 

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