Following Monday night’s powerful bomb blast at the Erawan Shrine in central Bangkok that killed 20 people and injured 125, the capital on Tuesday afternoon witnessed a second, apparently failed, bomb attack that was initially not much covered by the mainstream media.
Fortunately, no injuries were reported when an explosive device, believed to be a pipe bomb containing TNT and estimated to have a blast radius of 35 to 50 metres, was thrown from Bangkok’s Taksin Bridge into the Chao Phraya River.
The explosive, which police assume missed its target and bounced off a post, landed in a canal near the Sathorn pier where a number of ferry companies operate, taking tourists around the capital’s waterways. Police assume the bomb was meant to hit a footbridge crowded with pedestrians at the time, however missed the target and instead landed and exploded in the water.
CCTV footage (embedded below) shows a large plume of water shooting into the air.
The assistant national police chief has been quoted as saying that
the device was thrown from the bridge, but hit a pillar and bounced into the canal. [He] believes the perpetrator wanted to throw the bomb onto a busy pedestrian platform leading to the pier, but missed.
Bomb disposal technicians said that TNT was used in the device – same as in the device that detonated less than 24 hours earlier inside the Erawan Shrine compound at Bangkok’s Ratchaprasong intersection -, leading authorities to believe that both incidents are connected and the work of “the same group”.
The Bangkok Post quotes the national police chief as saying
there were more than one person behind the two bombings and that both Thais and foreign nationals were involved.
Earlier on Tuesday, police had released CCTV footage taken at the Erawan Shrine minutes before the Monday night blast. The clip shows a young foreign-looking man apparently dumping a backpack under a bench near the Hindu shrine before dialing a number on his mobile phone and leaving the scene.
Police later acknowledged though that the second bomb attack at the pier may have been a “copycat” and not related to Monday’s blast.