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Explosion rocks downtown Seattle after truck loses control near Pioneer Square

A car explodes after it was struck by a recycling truck Tuesday afternoon in downtown Seattle. (Photo courtesy Rebecca Bridge)

It was like a scene from the movies in downtown Seattle Tuesday afternoon when a car exploded after a recycling truck crashed into it on a steep hill near Pioneer Square.

Police are investigating whether the truck lost its brakes as it traveled down James St. between 3rd Ave. and 2nd Ave. The truck crashed into one car with such force it burst into flames and exploded, sending a huge fireball into the sky.

The fire spread to a second car, and a third car was damaged in the crash as the truck careened out of control, according to Seattle Fire Department spokesman Kyle Moore.

There were fears someone might be in the car that exploded, prompting firefighters to use heavy equipment to tear the car apart. But the driver appeared shortly after.

The driver of the truck was transported to Harborview Medical Center with a minor shoulder injury. Moore says he and his passenger were lucky they were wearing their seatbelts. No one else was injured.

About the Author


Josh Kerns is an award winning reporter on KIRO Radio 97.3 FM. He covers everything from May Day riots in Seattle to the latest Boeing news.

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