Downtown Miami residents saw their Fourth of July fireworks celebration cut short by a bomb scare that caused many to flee for their lives out of fear.
With terrorism a legitimate concern when large crowds gather and American politics delivering so much hatred these days, police had event organizers halt the show after a suspicious package was discovered nearby, the Miami Herald reported.
The fireworks display was to run for 15 minutes, but was stopped about seven minutes in, according to Commissioner Joe Carollo, chairman of a trust that puts on the annual show.
“It’s a major disappointment for a lot of people,” Carollo told the newspaper.
Miami Commissioner @JoeCarolloNow , chair of the Bayfront Park trust that put on downtown fireworks show, said it was cut off about halfway once police discovered the suspicious package. Estimated only seven minutes of a 15-minute show went off. "It's a major disappointment"
— Doug Hanks (@doug_hanks) July 5, 2019
Bayfront Park executive director Jose Solano said police instructed them to halt the show, according to the Herald.
“It’s disappointing,” Solano said. “I understand. They’ve got to do their jobs.”
Making matters worse, as Miami police began clearing out a nearby road, a panicked crowd was captured on video screaming while fleeing the area.
— Grogu (@thegraviator) July 5, 2019
Order was restored in a relatively short period of time, though.
Crowd is leaving. Fireworks show ended early. Reports of suspicious package and panic a few mins ago pic.twitter.com/GsEyeoL5S9
— Joel Franco (@OfficialJoelF) July 5, 2019
Miami police spokesperson Kenia Fallat confirmed to the Herald that officers cleared out a service road behind where the package was found, but she said they didn’t order a widespread evacuation of the crowded park.
The same message was tweeted by the official Miami Police Twitter account.
“We are currently on scene behind Bayside Marketplace investigating a suspicious package. The service road behind Bayside has been evacuated in order to allow our Bomb Squad to conduct their investigation. There have been NO evacuations to Bayside or Bayfront Park,” the tweet read.
We are currently on scene behind Bayside Marketplace investigating a suspicious package. The service road behind Bayside has been evacuated in order to allow our Bomb Squad to conduct their investigation. There have been NO evacuations to Bayside or Bayfront Park. pic.twitter.com/pChS410RcI
— Miami PD (@MiamiPD) July 5, 2019
The package turned out to be an abandoned suitcase and a Miami police bomb squad was dispatched to investigate — the suitcase would later be “deemed safe” after being “exploded” and determining that there was no bomb inside.
An update noted: “The suspicious package was a suitcase & it has been deemed safe.”
UPDATE: The suspicious package was a suitcase & it has been deemed safe. A section of Bayfront Park was evacuated in order to further conduct our investigation. Bayside Marketplace continues to remain open. Biscayne Blvd is open in open in both directions. https://t.co/s6CPtWtVH5
— Miami PD (@MiamiPD) July 5, 2019
And while there were a lot of disappointed folks, the good news is it turned out to be a “minor scare,” as opposed to a serious event.
Looks like a minor scare at Miami's Bayfront Park that cut the fireworks short. Police are looking at a suspicious vehicle.
— Grant Stern (@grantstern) July 5, 2019
As for the aforementioned political hate, given that Miami is a Democratic town these days, it didn’t long before someone blamed President Trump’s supporters.
A trumpkin must have done this.
— Merida Montero ? (@Goodluckbeer) July 5, 2019
It didn’t take any longer for someone to counter the irresponsible accusation:
How strong is the subconscious sexual attraction to Trump that this is the first thing you think about? Sorry, but you’re probably not his type.
— Meow (@PhilHar78681194) July 5, 2019
But then, in post-Obama America, where being triggered over events around you is just cause for taking action, a social media user — sarcastically? — called for banning fireworks altogether.
This day and age Fireworks should be banned as I was peacefully lying on my couch a huge boom shook my house n I literally felt my heart drop a bunch of bullet noise w/o visual effects is just stupid and NOT NICE ? #Outlaw #Ban
— ImPowered Wellness (@staceykarseras) July 5, 2019
Here’s a sampling of other responses from folks who may or may not have realized that the show was interrupted for safety reasons:
— Paula Lagos (@Paulagos) July 5, 2019
@CityofMiami, I drove 45 minutes from home, spent 30 minutes and $20 to park at a public garage near #BaysideMarketplace, waited 1 hour for the #FourthofJuly fireworks to start… And they only lasted 8 minutes. EIGHT. EF-ING. MINUTES. What a massive disappointment #smh #miami
— Mario Gil (@mariogil305) July 5, 2019
The fireworks at #BayfrontPark Miami lasted 8 minutes… Wtf…
It took people longer to park than that.
Last year in Bonita Springs, it was 25 minutes, laser lights and music…
This thing today was very disappointing@Miamicom
— Gabriel Peláez (@gabrielpelaez) July 5, 2019
— ⌖Rειnε⌖ (@ReigningReine) July 5, 2019
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