Two explosions shook the Athlone area late on Thursday night at a car dealership and a local shopping complex. Police confirmed the amount of explosions heard in surrounding neighbourhoods after two pipe bombs left broken glass and a burning car outside Auto Belgravia in Belgravia Road and a small shopping centre on the corner of Kromboom and Jan Smuts Roads in Crawford.
Despite reports on social media that Woolworths was a direct target of the attack, no information has yet come forward to confirm this rumour.
“Two explosions occurred tonight in Crawford and Athlone around 23h20, according to … the neighbourhood watch, Woolworths and Auto Belgravia were both bombed. I can’t vouch for the accuracy of this info other than having heard the two explosions myself approximately between 23h15 and 23h25. They were spaced a few minutes apart. I’m about 4 kilometres away from the Woolworths in Kromboom Rd so the explosions were not that obvious,” said a resident on Facebook at 2am on Friday.
According to social media reports, the explosion was heard as far as Kenwyn, Ottery, Newlands, Pinelands and Kensington.
“Huge loud bang sounds like a bomb that went off,” wrote one resident.
“We should be in a state of arms. Infidels on the loose,” added Bakr Absalom.
Police spokesperson Captain Frederick van Wyk said cases of malicious damage to property were opened by the SAPS.
“[We] can confirm that two incidents of explosions occurred last night just after 23:00; one in Belgravia road … at a motor dealership and the other one … at a small business centre. Cases of malicious damage to property were opened for investigation , no arrest[s] as yet.”
Woolworths confirmed its Kromboom Road store took damage but no injuries were reported.
Anyone with information on these incidents is encouraged to call police on 086 00 10111 or VOC News on 021 442 3500 to help us investigate further. VOC