The explosion happened during what was supposed to be a controlled detonation.
The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) recently confiscated a haul of illegal fireworks, only to have a bomb squad vehicle destroyed in the process. On Wednesday, in an attempt to safely dispose of the fireworks, they exploded and damaged the truck, as well as injured 17 people—including six civilians and at least nine LAPD officers and one U.S. Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) agent.
According to officials, the 5,000-pound haul of illegal fireworks was seized in a pre-July 4 weekend sweep.
"Some of the fireworks were being stored in our bomb squad trailer as a precautionary measure. Unknown at this time what caused the explosion," the LAPD said on Twitter.
A press conference was held on Wednesday night, with LAPD Chief Moore addressing the incident:
Video: The moment a truck carrying illegal fireworks, which was confiscated by the LAPD, exploded in South Los Angeles. At least 9 people were injured and multiple buildings were damaged. pic.twitter.com/Scx8BswqlQ— PM Breaking News (@PMBreakingNews) July 1, 2021
The explosion also damaged a number of buildings and scattered debris on the streets, local media outlets reported.
The fire department said city building and safety inspectors were evaluating damaged homes to determine "if anyone will be displaced.
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