Thursday 14th of December 2017

Explosion In Downtown Adelaide

 Parts of Adelaide's city centre are closed today after an explosion struck a building over night.

The explosion occurred in the heart of the city at 3 am this morning.in  Pirie St, in the very centre of the city.

ABC News said the three storey building has been "destroyed"

Snr Contable Mick Turnbull "It's going to take a while for us to sift through here and see what's actually happened here"

 SA Premier Mike Rann, from  the scene of the incident said that he wa "shocked
by what's happeneed here in the middle of Adelaide nd I'm shocked by
the extent of the damage.  When  you look at this from above the damage
goes back quite a long way"

Mr Rann said it would be wrong for
him to speculate on the cause of the explosion "until I've spokien to
the police and the firies"

 ABC Journalist Matthew Abraham said
that "There's a fair bit of speculation as to whether it's a gas
explosion or what's gone on down here, and a very worried looking
Premier as well."

"It's just so fortunate it happened so very early in the morning."

 "As the sun comes up you realise exactly how big a bang this has been" 

Superintendendant
Michk Schrappp"If an atttack at other than in the early hours of the
morning, there would have been signifigant injury.

A tenant of
the builiding told the ABC "I've spolken to the owner of the building
who is in construction, and he says the building will be demolished."

I'll post more here as it becomes available.  Somehow I'm afraid that this s just the beginning. 

fact from speculation .....

It's great that no-one was hurt Richard.

It's a sad sign of the times & the attitudes that have pervaded the thinking of our law enforcement people & the general populace that see Superintendendant Mick Schrappp referring to the incident as an "attack" ..... before the cause has even been investigated & established!!!

Shades of the alleged Kovco "suicide". 

Adelaide Blast Update

Schrand wasn't the one to uese the word "attack" .. that was another police spokesman I who's name I don't have.

ABC says that early speculation that this was a gas explosion have been dismissed. John I"m being as careful as I can.. I think the word "attack" was a Freudian slip from worry... let's leave it there for now.

Gas company Origin were told by police at 7am this morning as they could go home as the incident wasn't gas related.

Thre force of the blast  punched a hole in the first floor window of the adjacent building.

The facade of the blast affected building (121 Pirie St) was moved forward by the impact.  It is to be destroyed immediately in a controlled demolition.

The owner of the building, Mr Gilbert is a structural engineer and has been assessing the building.

The owner of one the three buisinesses in the building, JPs  Cafe, is unaccounted for by police, his car having been found at the rear of the building.   Anxious relatives are waiting while police enter the building.  Police say they have "considerable concerns" for the man's safety.

Adelaide Update 2 - A sad and simple story

After everything with Kovco, and the heebeejeebies I had at the Casino, not to mention my well-documented worries about  June, I heard the broadcast this morning and thought that my worst nightmares were coming true. 

What we have is the sad story of a shopkeeper who was three months behind on his rent in the building with some cans of petrol.  Unfortunately they exploded.

Armageddon hasn't started, and I need an early night or two, I think.  And to consider some simpler and happier notions.

The one thing I need to say about what I wrote on Sunday that if you've ever felt as if you were in a room with a ghost, I had the sensation of being in a room containing a hundred.

Update 2.5

Again I need to check my facts.  SA Police aren't saying that a petrol explosion wasn't necessarily the cause, and that a number of things might hae happened

Adelaide Blast Update 3

 The Tiser journos are posing a question here.

[extract]

INVESTIGATIONS into yesterday's massive city
explosion will today focus on examining petrol containers found at the
Pirie St site.

The containers were located after the body of JP's Cafe owner Frank
Levato, 49, was found under rubble from the explosion that destroyed
his restaurant and other businesses.

The dead man had been trapped by a crumbling wall as he apparently fled the premises.

Sources have told The Advertiser Mr Levato's vehicle was reversed into a rear carpark, with the keys left in the ignition.

Early inquiries are understood to have indicated Mr Levato had
been in financial difficulty. His best friend, Joe Piantadosi, 50,
however, said the dead man's family was "not aware" of any financial
problems.

Mr Levato, a former northern suburbs hair
salon owner and popular businessman, had no enemies who would want him
dead, Mr Piantadosi said.

The blast ripped through two restaurants and a sports store in
the city's heart at 3.15am, killing Mr Levato and forcing police to
shut part of Pirie St amid fears the building could collapse.

 Too many possibilities still exist to speculate.

 

Rubble

Recalling that scene from the Blues Brothers, where Jake & Elwood emerge unharmed from a destroyed building, Howard & Co are trying to pull off the same stunt. 

Michael Brissenden wrote a fine account of the political aftermath of the Kovco incidents for New Matilda. He says the events have created significant problems for the Tories, as they try to run their agenda. [Note to myself re New Matilda. I am a paid-up subscriber, and sometimes feel like making a contribution in the 'Forum' section. So, why does NM require a separate log-in for the discussion forum? That is nuts. I've forgotten the password and can't be bothered jumping through any more hoops.] I wonder if more than a few Aussies are thinking the result would have been a lot different, if it was Private Nelson, Downer or Howard in the coffin.

Now, there's this - Everybody is with you mate: PM to miners. Here's an opportunist in full flight, kicking the ball to himself. Beazley was correct to rip into the workplace laws, and would have been a dill if he'd let the chance slip past. If he can't differentiate himself on Labor's home turf, there's no hope.

While I am raving, there was an interesting segment on SBS Insight (LABOR PAINS) last night. The ALP was being dissected, with George Negus called in at short notice to replace Jenny Brockie. He had a filmed report form the NSW seat of Dobell, that passed over from Labor to the Libs last time. Lots of interview with the disappointed Labor candidate, and voters in the streets. He also had Barry Cohen (ex Hawke minister) who was from that region, and also ran a small business in the area for years. Cohen said, on the big screen to the audience, that he could see the Labor candidate was a nice chap, but he'd hadn't seen or read anything about him or his policies for the electorate. The poor bloke was in the studio, watching. There's a tip for aspiring candidates - make sure to look up the previous members for your electorate, and all the existing and retired party figures. To have to listen to an ex-minister say he'd never heard of you must be a pretty good reason for Labor's failure to cut through to the "person in the street".

I do not think that will change, as far as Labor is concerned, although there will be a few exceptions. The news in the next electoral cycle will be about independents. A few indies will succeed, like Nick Xenophon, and many will bit the dust. But some stars will erupt out of the grey flannel, and will have good chances to influence governments.

On that note, it will be instructive to watch the progress of People Power, in Australia, and some of the people running for the US Congress this year, like Coleen Rowley.

I would rather vote for the CEC, or Family First, than a desperate populist like Howard. If it came to that, I'd take care of my own preferencing, though.