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Bomb Squad Responds After Shipping Container Explodes at Port of L.A.

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A bomb squad was sent to investigate after a shipping container exploded on Terminal Island at the Port of Los Angeles on Tuesday, officials said.

Firefighters initially responded to the scene at 160 S. Ferry St. shortly before 6 p.m., the L.A. Fire Department said in an alert.

The container was parked and not hooked up to a truck at the time. The explosion appeared to have sent debris over a fence and onto Ferry Street on Terminal Island, below the Vincent Thomas Bridge.

No injuries were reported, but port employees were subsequently evacuated from the area.

So far, the incident has been contained to a minor explosion in one container, and it is believed to be an industrial accident, according to Phillip Sanfield, a spokesperson for the port.

The cargo unit was being shipping out of the port and loaded with recycled metals, Sanfield said.

Port Police Deputy Chief Randy Allen said the combustion could have been casued by "other chemicals or things like that" that the scrap metals could have contained.

Because it was one of a group of 10, the bomb squad was on scene to ensure none of the others in the group contained materials that could cause a similar reaction.

L.A. Police Officer Mike Lopez confirmed that the agency sent its bomb squad at the request of L.A. Port Police, and the Coast Guard said it was also responding.

The terminal the container was in — one of seven at the port — was shuttered while authorities investigated, but the rest of the facility remained operational, Sanfield said.

Fire officials had initially described the piece of equipment involved as a tractor trailer.

No further details were immediately available.

KTLA's Nidia Becerra contributed to this report.

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