NEW YORK (CBSLA.com/AP) — Police and firefighters are at the scene of a possible explosion in New York City.
The Fire Department says the blast was reported shortly before 9 p.m. Saturday on West 23rd Street in the Chelsea section of Manhattan.
Authorities said 29 people have been reported injured. The injuries are not considered life-threatening. Twenty injuries were described as minor, two were described as moderate. One of the injuries was called serious.
City Councilman Corey Johnson, who represents the area, told cable news station New York 1 that FBI and federal Homeland Security officials were on the scene, in addition to New York City police.
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Numerous emergency vehicles are in the area, which is a major thoroughfare with many restaurants.
Witnesses said the blast seemed to come from a dumpster.
Officials said gas has been ruled out as a possible cause.
Bomb-sniffing dogs are on scene, authorities said.
Bomb experts believe from the sounds witnesses reported and the remnants from the dumpster they’re likely dealing with an Improvised Explosive Device or IED. By 10:30 p.m. New York Time, officials said they were definitely dealing with a deliberate act.
Several subways in the area of 23rd Street have been shut as a precaution, authorities said.
The reports of a possible blast comes hours after a pipe bomb exploded in Seaside Park, New Jersey, shortly before thousands of runners participated in a charity 5K race to benefit Marines and sailors.
Officials do not yet know it the two incidents are linked.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio wanted to reassure New Yorkers that “all agencies” were on full alert.
The mayor also said a second device was found. He also said police were looking through surveillance videos in an effort to identify a suspect or suspects.
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Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti issued the following statement Saturday evening:
“Our thoughts are with everyone who has endured the violence in New York, New Jersey and Philadelphia this weekend. We condemn those responsible and offer our support to first responders and all those working tirelessly to tend to the injured, restore calm and investigate these senseless attacks. The LAPD is closely monitoring these situations and remains dedicated to ensuring the safety and security of all of L.A.’s communities.”
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