The news about the exploding vehicle in Nashville has gotten a lot more interesting since I first posted about it this morning. While I was eating Christmas dinner with my extended family and socializing (maskless, closer than six feet, including hugs and sharing food), these interesting tidbits came in:
Item #1: According to multiple witnesses, the RV that eventually exploded had broadcast a robot voice warning people of the coming detonation. “Evacuate now” was repeated over and over again, accompanied by a countdown: “This vehicle will explode in 15 minutes… This vehicle will explode in 14 minutes… 13 minutes…”
Item #2: The possibility of human remains associated with the exploded vehicle:
Police believe the blast was intentional but don’t yet know a motive or target, and Drake noted that officials had not received any threats before the explosion.
The chief said investigators at the scene “have found tissue that we believe could be remains, but we’ll have that examined and let you know at that time.” Police could not say whether it potentially came from someone inside the RV.
Item #3: The blast appears to have done major damage to telecommunications over a widespread area of Tennessee and Kentucky:
…Buildings shook and windows shattered streets away from the explosion near a building owned by AT&T that lies one block from the company’s office tower, a landmark in downtown.
“We do not know if that was a coincidence, or if that was the intention,” police spokesman Don Aaron said. He said earlier that some people were taken to the department’s central precinct for questioning but declined to give details.
AT&T said the affected building is the central office of a telephone exchange, with network equipment in it. The blast interrupted service, but the company declined to say how widespread outages were.
The AT&T outages site showed service issues in middle Tennessee and Kentucky. Several police agencies reported that their 911 systems were down because of the outage, including Knox County, home to Knoxville about 180 miles (290 kilometers) east of Nashville.
AT&T said that it was bringing in portable cell sites and was working with law enforcement to get access to make repairs to its equipment. The company noted that “power is essential to restoring” service.
The Federal Aviation Administration temporarily halted flights out of Nashville International Airport because of telecommunications issues associated with the explosion.