Teen remains stable after blast from homemade bomb
ALONE in a Milton St house without parents, a 14-year-old boy worked on a homemade explosive device while his 15-year-old friend is believed to have left the room to go into the kitchen for a drink. That was when disaster struck.
What is thought to have been a mixture of cap gun and sparkler material exploded in the 14-year-old boy's hands, leaving him without a thumb and finger on one hand and facing the possibility of losing his other hand, Mackay Police District Inspector Andy Graham said yesterday.
He was rushed to Mackay Base Hospital after the explosion, about 3pm on Sunday, and then flown to Brisbane's Princess Alexandra Hospital, where he remains in a stable condition.
Insp Graham said it was likely he'd be in hospital for "some time".
Police believe the teenage boys were responsible for leaving the remains of two explosive devices on an oval at Mackay State High School, which teachers discovered yesterday morning.
"What's happened at a school nearby where this residence is situated, we've located a couple of devices that are similar in nature to those that occurred at the house," Insp Graham said.
"We're only surmising that at this point, it's only early days.
"We'll have to speak to the kids in relation to that."
A bomb technician inspected the devices and confirmed they had been detonated. It was unclear when they were detonated and Insp Graham said the SES had been called in to conduct a full search of the school to ensure there weren't more devices. Insp Graham said the 15-year-old boy was interviewed yesterday afternoon and it was unclear at this stage whether charges would be laid.
"That's part of our ongoing investigation," he said. "I'm not saying we're looking at any adults' involvement in this particular case but it's certainly something we'll be looking at. If we consider charges, they will be a long time down the track."
PARENTS SHOULD WARN CHILDREN
IT WAS nothing more than some sparklers, some material from a cap gun and some insulation tape.
These readily available items were what two youths combined to make the homemade bomb that packed a dangerous punch.
Inspector Andy Graham said the incident served as a stark reminder for parents to talk to their children about the dangers of trying to experiment with such risky devices.
A quick Google search can give internet users a wealth of inaccurate and misleading information about making bombs.
There are plenty of 'how to' guides but not many of them explain the dangers or consequences.
Insp Graham said it was up to parents to educate their children about trying to make such devices.
"What we need to do is to get the message out, use these examples... of what can occur if material is used for any reason other than what they're designed to do," he said.
A tennis ball was used in one of the devices found on the school oval yesterday, Insp Graham said.
- One homemade device exploded at a Milton St home
- Two found at Mackay State High School oval yesterday morning
- Believed to be made from material from sparklers and cap guns, covered in insulation tape