(CNN)The computerized voice emanating from the white motor home offered a terrifying warning: “This vehicle will explode in 15 minutes.”

The voice repeated the message, counting down as the minutes passed.As the countdown continued, six police officers who heard those warnings sprang into action, helping residents in downtown Nashville evacuate before the motor home made good on its threat and exploded Friday morning.The bomb tore through the neighborhood in the predawn hours, yet only injured three people thanks to the officers’ quick work and bravery, officials said.”Officers immediately began knocking on doors and evacuating residents here, not knowing if the bomb was going to detonate immediately or if it was going to go off in the time that it was stated,” Metro Nashville Police Chief John Drake said.Read MoreClockwise, from top-left: Officer Amanda Topping, Officer Brenna Hosey, Officer James Wells, Officer Michael Sipos, Officer Richard Luellen and Sgt. Timothy Miller.Clockwise, from top-left: Officer Amanda Topping, Officer Brenna Hosey, Officer James Wells, Officer Michael Sipos, Officer Richard Luellen and Sgt. Timothy Miller.Clockwise, from top-left: Officer Amanda Topping, Officer Brenna Hosey, Officer James Wells, Officer Michael Sipos, Officer Richard Luellen and Sgt. Timothy Miller.Nashville Mayor John Cooper praised the six responding officers, saying they “took swift action and directed people away from danger to save lives, even at the time that their own lives were imperiled.””They are heroes. And I am grateful for them and all of Nashville’s first responders,” Cooper said.The Metropolitan Nashville Police Department identified the officers in a news release late Friday as:Officer Brenna Hosey, who has been with the department for 4 years;Officer James Luellen, who has been with the department for 3 years;Officer Michael Sipos, who has been with the department for 16 months;Officer Amanda Topping, who has been with the department for 21 months;Officer James Wells, who has been with the department for 21 months; andSergeant Timothy Miller, who has been with the department for 11 years.The RV’s explosion shattered windows and sent flaming pieces of debris through the air, damaging several buildings. Three civilians were hospitalized and are in stable condition, officials said. The force of the explosion knocked down one officer, police spokesman Don Aaron said, and caused hearing loss in another. But no officers suffered serious injuries.Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleExplosion rocks downtown Nashville Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleA vehicle burns following an explosion in downtown Nashville on Friday, December 25. A vehicle burns following an explosion in downtown Nashville on Friday, December 25. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleA vehicle burns following an explosion in downtown Nashville on Friday, December 25. Hide Caption 1 of 9Smoke rises from 2nd Avenue North in downtown Nashville after the explosion.Smoke rises from 2nd Avenue North in downtown Nashville after the explosion. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleSmoke rises from 2nd Avenue North in downtown Nashville after the explosion.Hide Caption 2 of 9Emergency responders assess the damage near the scene.Emergency responders assess the damage near the scene. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleEmergency responders assess the damage near the scene.Hide Caption 3 of 9In this photo from the Nashville Fire Department, burned cars, charred branches and debris are seen spread across the street.In this photo from the Nashville Fire Department, burned cars, charred branches and debris are seen spread across the street. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleIn this photo from the Nashville Fire Department, burned cars, charred branches and debris are seen spread across the street.Hide Caption 4 of 9A K-9 unit works in the area of the explosion.A K-9 unit works in the area of the explosion. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleA K-9 unit works in the area of the explosion.Hide Caption 5 of 9The explosion caused buildings to shake and windows to blow out.The explosion caused buildings to shake and windows to blow out. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleThe explosion caused buildings to shake and windows to blow out.Hide Caption 6 of 9Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) agents evaluate the site of the explosion.Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) agents evaluate the site of the explosion. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleAlcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) agents evaluate the site of the explosion.Hide Caption 7 of 9Firetrucks and emergency responders fill the streets following the explosion.Firetrucks and emergency responders fill the streets following the explosion. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleFiretrucks and emergency responders fill the streets following the explosion.Hide Caption 8 of 9A law enforcement officer walks past damage from the explosion on 2nd Avenue North in downtown Nashville.A law enforcement officer walks past damage from the explosion on 2nd Avenue North in downtown Nashville. Photos: Explosion rocks downtown NashvilleA law enforcement officer walks past damage from the explosion on 2nd Avenue North in downtown Nashville.Hide Caption 9 of 918 nashville explosion 1225 RESTRICTED19 nashville explosion 1225 RESTRICTED04 nashville explosion 122521 nashville explosion 122514 nashville explosion 122510 nashville explosion 122516 nashville explosion 122520 nashville explosion 1225 RESTRICTED22 nashville explosion 1225Mayor Cooper described it as a “deliberate bomb,” but officials did not yet have a full explanation for the unusual warnings and blast.Nashville Vice Mayor Jim Shulman told CNN’s Anderson Cooper on Friday that a female voice was speaking in the warning message played from the RV. Betsy Williams, a witness who lives in another building across the street from the explosion, described it as a “computerized” and female voice.”This area must be evacuated now,” the voice said three times.Mayor Cooper noted the hardships the city has faced this year and expressed appreciation for the efforts of the responding officers.”This is a year where we understand what our first responders mean to our community time and time again,” Cooper said. “Unfortunately on Christmas Day, you have another example of that.”

Source Link:
https://www.cnn.com/2020/12/26/us/six-nashville-officers-evacuate-explosion/index.html

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