Superintendent Colonel Nathaniel McQueen Jr.
Bridgeville – The Delaware State Police are continuing their investigation into an explosion of an air cannon at Punkin Chunkin.
Preliminary information reveals the incident occurred around 2:45 p.m. this afternoon, Sunday November 6, 2016, when an air cannon called “Pumpkin Reaper” was preparing to launch. For undetermined reasons, the trap door of the cannon, where the pumpkins are loaded, separated upon the launch of the pumpkin. The door and other parts were blown away from the cannon and into the air before coming down and striking a 39-year-old female in the head and face area.
The female, whose name is being withheld pending notification of next of kin, was treated immediately on scene by Sussex County Paramedics and transported by EMS to Nanticoke Memorial Hospital. She was stabilized and then flown to Christiana Medical Center by LifeNet Helicopter where she is currently listed in critical condition.
A 56-year-old male was also injured in the incident and was transported by EMS to Nanticoke Memorial Hospital where he is currently being treated for non-life-threatening injuries.
Detectives with the Delaware State Police are being assisted by Delaware Department of Natural Resources in this investigation. This is an active and on-going investigation and details surrounding the incident will be released at the conclusion of the investigation.
Released: 110616 1810
Troopers Investigating an Explosion at Punkin Chunkin Contest- Correction
Presented by Public Information Officer, Master Corporal Jeffrey R. Hale
Bridgeville, DE– The subject injured in the explosion of the apparatus being used in the Punkin Chunkin Contest in Bridgeville, DE has not died as a result of their injuries as reported. The male subject has been removed from the scene and transported to an area hospital in critical condition.
The investigation into this incident is still ongoing. More details will be released at a later time.
Released: 110616 1535
Bridgeville, DE– Delaware State Police are currently investigating the explosion of an apparatus which was being utilized in the Punkin Chunkin Contest this afternoon in Bridgeville.
The initial investigation has determined that the incident occurred at approximately 2:45 p.m. this afternoon at the contest held at 18598 Apple Tree Road, Bridgeville. As a result of the explosion, one person has died. It is unknown if there were any other injuries at this time.
The investigation into this incident is in its very early stages. More information will be released as it is made available.
Released: 110616 1511