UPDATES: At least two killed in Boston Marathon blasts, 100+ injured, additional unexploded devices reported

image from @Boston_to_a_T
image from @Boston_to_a_T

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At least two people are dead following a pair of explosions in Boston, Massachusetts where thousands of runners are participating in the annual Boston Marathon. Local media report over 100 people have been injured as well.

Preliminary reports suggest two explosions occurred near the finish line of the 26.2-mile event shortly before 3 pm local time, and the Boston Globe is reporting two deaths and more than 100 injuries.

Federal aviation authorities have declared a no-fly zone over the area and authorities including the US Air Force continue to attempt to secure the scene. The aviation restrictions have reportedly extended to an order that all flights out of Boston’s Logan Airport be grounded until further notice.

An intelligence official working on the scene told the Associated Press that two additional explosive devices were found inside garbage cans near the site, and are being dismantled by a bomb squad.

As law enforcement look for further explosives, they have reportedly told people in the area to stay off of mobile phones in fears that the signal could detonate another undiscovered device.

A source at Boston’s Mass General hospital claimed that at least 10 patients have been admitted to the facility’s emergency room with missing limbs after the accident.

Police denied a claim by the New York Post that a 20-year-old Saudi Arabian national was in custody as a suspect in the blasts.

Editor’s note: many conflicting reports surrounding this particular alleged Saudi Arabian national. See updates below.

An explosion hit Boston’s John F. Kennedy Library as well Monday afternoon, with Boston’s police commissioner saying law enforcement officials were “not certain” if it was related to the blasts at the marathon, though they were “treating them as if  they are.”

image from @GlobeDavidLRyan
image from @GlobeDavidLRyan

The Boston Marathon’s headquarters have reportedly put on locked down while authorities investigate the incident. Both US President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden have been made aware of the tragedy.

“Obama has directed administration to provide whatever assistance is necessary in the investigation and response,” a White House official tells the Globe.

image from @EvilMikeTomlin

image from @EvilMikeTomlin

Eyewitnesses say smoke filled the streets of the city after a first explosion, and seconds later another loud boom was heard.

“I saw two explosions. The first one was beyond the finish line. I heard a loud bang and I saw smoke rising,” Boston Herald reporter Chris Cassidy says from the scene. “I kept running and I heard behind me a loud bang. It looked like it was in a trash can or something.”

“There are people who have been hit with debris, people with bloody foreheads,” he says.

Witness Andrea Storer adds to the Globe, “It was huge. There had to be people killed. There had to be.”

“Blood everywhere,” another witness tells the paper.

The event has been put on hold and paramedics are quickly trying to assess the situation.

Earlier in the afternoon, 23-year-old Ethiopian runner Lelisa Desisa came in first-place by completing the run in 2 hours, 10 minutes and 22 seconds. At the time of the explosions, though, hundreds of runners were still racing for the finish line.

Organizers call the event the “world’s oldest annual marathon and one of the world’s most prestigious road races.”

UPDATE: There are reports of other devices being discovered. Business Insider reports, “The police scanner said that police were going to do a third, controlled explosion on the 600 block of Boylston Street.” It is unclear what that statement means at this point.

UPDATE 2: The New York Post reports that 12 were killed and 50 injured. They are also reporting that a suspect has been identified and is under guard at the hospital.

UPDATE 3: There is now video from the moment of the explosion available online:

UPDATE 4: Regarding the first update, according to some, the bomb was detonated in a controlled explosion by the bomb squad. It does not seem to be the case that there was a “drill” going on at the time, as claimed in one post. This seems to be a misinterpretation of the reports which indicate that a third explosive was actually detonated by police in a controlled manner. This claim that there was a “drill” going on at the same time was apparently influenced by a Boston Globe tweet reading, “Officials: There will be a controlled explosion opposite the library within one minute as part of bomb squad activities.” It is important to note that was tweeted one hour after the initial two explosions were reported.

UPDATE 5: Video of the second explosion:

UPDATE 6: Cell service reportedly shut down in Boston:

UPDATE 7: Number of injured now up to 100:

UPDATE 8: Video update via RT:

UPDATE 9: Explosion at the JFK Library reported fire related:

UPDATE 10: While RT and Talking Points Memo report that police have denied the claim that a Saudi Arabian suspect is being held, others including NBC News continue to repeat the report. It seems to have originally stemmed from a NY Post report.

UPDATE 11: The “drill” claims are supported by University of Mobile’s Cross Country Coach Ali Stevenson. ““It seemed like there was some sort of threat, but they kept telling us it was just a drill,” Stevenson said according to WPMI.

UPDATE 12: CNN’s national security analyst claims that “the explosions in Boston could be the work of Al Qaeda terrorists as much as they could be part of a planned assault by ‘right-wing extremists.’”

UPDATE 13: Video of the explosion as it happened:

UPDATE 14: Obama is now vowing that those responsible for the bombing “will feel the full weight of justice”

Updates will follow as more information is available. More live updates are available via RT, Yahoo and Boston Globe’s Twitter.

A runner in a wheelchair is taken from a triage tent after explosions went off at the 117th Boston Marathon in Boston, Massachusetts April 15, 2013 (Reuters / Jessica Rinaldi)
A runner in a wheelchair is taken from a triage tent after explosions went off at the 117th Boston Marathon in Boston, Massachusetts April 15, 2013 (Reuters / Jessica Rinaldi)

Police guard an area at the one mile checkpoint near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts (Alex Trautwig / Getty Images / AFP)
Police guard an area at the one mile checkpoint near Kenmore Square after two bombs exploded during the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts (Alex Trautwig / Getty Images / AFP)

Video still of ABC footage
Video still of ABC footage

Video still of ABC footage
Video still of ABC footage

Video still of ABC footage
Video still of ABC footage

Source: RT

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