Improvised Explosive Device (IED) Detonates at Suburban Chicago Train Station

Bomb was planted to detonate at commuter waiting area minutes before a train was scheduled to arrive.

Authorities: “The device was more elaborate than some - it had a timer that allowed a delayed detonation.”

2 September 2006: A pipe bomb constructed with a timing device exploded at the Metra train station in Hinsdale, a western suburb of Chicago during Friday morning’s commute just minutes before a train was scheduled to arrive at the stop. The blast sent metal fragments and shrapnel flying and caused minimal property damage but no injuries, according to police. The bomb exploded inside a garbage can in the commuter waiting area of the station. Had it detonated near passengers, people would have definitely been injured. Remnants of the bomb are being transported to a lab in Maryland for analysis to see what components comprised the device.At 6:53 a.m., a 911 call was received from a Metra employee who said someone had thrown a firecracker in the garbage of the main depot, 25 E. Hinsdale Ave., and shortly after that, the fire alarm for the depot activated, according to the release from Hinsdale police.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives are investigating, and agents remained at the scene in Hinsdale as of 4:30 p.m. yesterday. Local, county and federal authorities swept the station in search of other devices and notified other Metra stations to search their facilities, stated BATFE spokesman Tom Ahern. No other devices were found.

According Hinsdale police, Metra police held a suspect at Union Station, after he was seen putting an item into the garbage can. The suspect then boarded the 6:56 a.m. or 7:04 a.m. train to Chicago. The suspect, who was later released, was described as a “tall, thin black male,” appearing to be in his earliy twenties. Ahern, however, said there were no suspects, only a few “people of interest” who authorities want to interview. They include people who were seen either on the platform or in the depot immediately prior to the explosion, he said.

Hinsdale Police Chief Bradley Bloom stated: “We’re a little concerned, because it was a somewhat sophisticated device,” referring to the timer. “And it was just inside the door” of the station, he said. Police handed out fliers with a description of the incident at train stations Friday afternoon, asking anyone with information to contact authorities, Bloom said.

Ahern said, adding there was minimal damage to the station.

Local, county and federal authorities swept the station in search of other devices and notified other Metra stations to search their facilities, Ahern said. No other devices were found.

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