By John Ruch and Rebeca Oliveira/Gazette Staff
At least two explosions, apparently from bombs, near the Boston Marathon finish line on Boylston Street in the Back Bay injured dozens of people this afternoon, according to TV news and first-responder reports. Two people are confirmed dead, according to the Boston Police Department’s Twitter feed.
Many Mission Hill and Longwood Medical Area residents and activists, including teams from Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary, were running the world-famous annual race. Amid the chaos and a police lockdown on the area, there has been no identification of the victims. There was no immediate word that anyone from Mission Hill or the LMA had been injured, but it remains impossible to be certain.
Local City Councilor Mike Ross, a Mission Hill resident and mayoral candidate, was taking photos and tweeting them near the finish line shortly before the explosions. Further tweets show Ross is safe and warning people away from the area. He was not immediately available for comment.
“God help the victims of this tragedy,” Ross tweeted.
City Councilor Matt O’Malley, who represents part of the Back of the Hill, was checking on scores of friends who were running, he said.
“I’m just trying to reach out,” O’Malley said. “I’ve heard from some, haven’t heard from others.”
The MBTA has halted Green Line stops in the Back Bay area, and the Orange and Red Line trains will skip the Downtown Crossing stop.
Brigham and Women’s Facebook page–which features its team of marathon runners–has been updated to list blood donation information. The hospital urges people not to show up in large numbers and instead to call and make an appointment at 617-632-3206.
The Gazette will continue to update this story with any new information.