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Car explosion rocks suburban Adelaide -

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Car explosion rocks suburban Adelaide

Nance Haxton reported this story on Thursday, February 11, 2010 12:26:00

ELEANOR HALL: To Adelaide where a car explosion this morning killed two people and spread debris in
a 50-metre radius.

Police say the man who hired the car was known to police and criminologists say the size of the
explosion suggests this was not simply a malfunction in the car.

In Adelaide, Nance Haxton reports.

NANCE HAXTON: The street in suburban Enfield was cordoned off by police after the explosion at
around 5.30 this morning. Neighbours say the blast was so powerful that it shook houses and blew
out windows.

Neil lives nearby where the explosion took place and says he was woken by a loud bang.

NEIL: All we did was essentially just open the door, come outside and we've had a look and all the
other neighbours have come out. And the other neighbours actually got their windows smashed in
because it was that close.

And you could just see just debris just everywhere sitting on our front yard as well, so. And the
police just said just to stay indoors and not to come outside. There could be another explosion
there. And you could see the robot going out the front and having a look obviously. So it doesn't
seem that safe to be honest.

NANCE HAXTON: Other nearby neighbours confirmed the size of the blast.

VOX POP: About half past five I heard a bang. It woke me up.

VOX POP 2: You know we could hear the shattering glass and bits and pieces coming into our yard,

VOX POP 3: Oh a huge bang that I thought was a burst of thunder or something landing on the roof.

NANCE HAXTON: Superintendent Barry Lewis says the Holden Omega sedan that exploded was hired
yesterday at Adelaide airport.

He says the 31-year-old man who hired the car had a history of drug offences though as yet they
can't confirm whether he was one of the two people killed in the car.

BARRY LEWIS: We do know that the person who rented it is well known to police.

The distressing part about this is it is in a street occupied where obviously people, children and
others are. We have no idea of what caused the explosion as yet.

And we are looking at whole lot of different aspects as to whether or not any clandestine lab was
set up, whether there was any explosive in the car and we have bomb experts doing that.

So it's very early in the investigation as to yet, it's very early in the investigation as to
identify the people and obviously it's a pretty traumatic time because the people are both deceased
and have been affected by an explosion.

NANCE HAXTON: Superintendent Lewis says the man who hired the car has no known bikie gang links.

Criminologist Dr Derek Dalton from Flinders University says he believes it's linked to crime.

DEREK DALTON: There is certainly some criminal connection here. This clearly doesn't appear to be
just some sort of accident where there's been a fault in the car and the car happens to have blown
up due to a petrol leak etc. It clearly is something more dramatic than that.

NANCE HAXTON: What about at Enfield? Are there known criminal problems in that area of Adelaide?

DEREK DALTON: I guess we could certainly say that that is an area that is somewhat associated with
bikies etc. But once again I think it's a little early. We're being a little bit speculative.

NANCE HAXTON: So really there could be a few scenarios here that the police would need to

DEREK DALTON: There certainly would be a few scenarios but the only thing I'd be confident about
saying is that it would appear at this stage there's certainly some direct criminal connection. But
the nature of that connection - who's behind it, who the target was etc - is certainly unclear at
this stage.

ELEANOR HALL: That's criminologist Dr Derek Dalton.