Concerns are flowing that a Sunday explosion on an uninhabited island off of Long Island, New York, could be a trial run for a terrorist bombing, leading authorities to call in the FBI to investigate.
The facts of the incident are clear. At about 11 a.m. on Sunday, an explosion took place on Fox Island, a speck of land about a mile south of the town of Babylon in Suffolk County, according to Fox News. No one was injured in the blast.
“It was just a huge boom,” witness John Sacchitello said, according to WLNY-TV.
UPDATE from SCPD: It’s “definitely a concern” that the #explosion on #FoxIsland yesterday could be a test run for an act of terrorism. @SCPDHq now confirms it’s working with the @FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force on the investigation @News12LI @News12 pic.twitter.com/iYxGZS9w9c
— Eileen Lehpamer (@ELehpamer12) November 29, 2021
“My first instinct was somebody’s boat exploded. But the way the smoke dissipated so rapidly, I figured someone set something off,” he explained.
The blast left behind a crater about four feet wide by two feet deep. Authorities think a boat nearby that was speeding away from the island could be linked to the explosion.
“Focused on a bunch of pictures that came out of a boat that may have had two, maybe three young people on the boat leaving the scene,” Babylon Supervisor Rich Schaffer said.
— Long-Island-Portal (@LawngIsland) November 29, 2021
But there remains the concern that the explosion was a terrorist trial run.
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“We do know that when people produce homemade explosives, very often they want to test those explosives to make sure they function as intended, so that is one of our concerns, and that is why we want to determine what transpired yesterday morning,” Suffolk County police acting Commissioner Stuart Cameron said Monday, according to Newsday.
A Suffolk County police spokeswoman told Fox News that “terrorism is always a concern because people do test devices before using them.”
The FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force has been called in to assist with the investigation, she said.
Cameron said police are “concerned as to why someone would detonate a device of this size and magnitude on an uninhabited island,” according to WLNY-TV.
“So we definitely want to find out who did it,” Cameron said, Newsday reported. “If you are the person responsible for this detonation, I encourage you to come forward and identify yourself to our department, so we can find the root cause of this incident and allay any concerns for the public.”
That Long Island explosion yesterday was so powerful, it registered as a 3.6m quake at first. https://t.co/gQ0f57ZFlX
— Anthony Loconte (@AnthonyLoconte6) November 30, 2021
The explosion resulted in hundreds of calls to public safety dispatchers.
“I had no idea what it was. It’s definitely a scary situation because you don’t know what it is,” Daniel Rivera of Huntington said, according to WLNY-TV.