The Independence Day holiday weekend had many front-page tragedies across the country, two of which occurred here in California.
Premature Detonation Sends Fireworks into Simi Valley Crowd
28 people were injured after a pyrotechnic device prematurely detonated on July 4th, causing a chain reaction accident at a Simi Valley Independence Day fireworks display. The malfunctioning device tipped over other firework launchers like dominoes, which sent live fireworks into the crowd of 8,000-10,000 people.
20 of the injured were taken to local hospitals by ambulance. Four of the injured experience serious injuries. Videos taken of the event show fireworks exploding in a sea of spectators running for cover. The California Occupational Safety and Health Administrator is investigating the incident.
Train Carrying Oil Derails in Quebec, Explodes in Small Town
At least five people are dead after a runaway, 73-car train carrying crude oil derailed and exploded in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, population 6,000, on July 6th. As many as 40 people were still reported missing as of Sunday, and authorities expect the death toll to continue climbing.
The train was parked uphill of the town when the brakes apparently failed and sent the train downhill, unchecked. It derailed in the center of Lac-Megantic around 1:00 a.m., one train car exploding in the downtown district. Over the next few hours, four additional train cars exploded. This news story is still developing.
Asiana Airlines Flight 214 Crash Lands at San Francisco International Airport
Two passengers were killed and 180 injured after Asiana Airlines Flight 214 crash landed in San Francisco on July 6th. While the crash is still under investigation, it appears as though the Boeing 777 was traveling too slow as it approached the runway and landed short, clipping a sea wall, ripping the tail off the plane.
Numerous theories as to the cause of the crash are being discussed. This news story is still developing.