Nova Scotia

Dartmouth runner shocked, scared at Boston Marathon

A Dartmouth woman who ran in the Boston Marathon described the shock and terror she felt after two explosions killed at least three people and injured dozens at the race's finish line.

At least 3 dead, dozens injured in explosions near Boston Marathon finish line

An image captured by Bostonian Dan Lampariello and posted to Twitter shows Boston Marathon runners heading toward the finish line when there's an explosion at street level, and thick smoke rises a block further

A Dartmouth woman who ran in the Boston Marathon described the shock and terror she felt after two explosions killed at least three people and injured dozens at the race's finish line.

Boston police said an incident at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum that was initially thought to be another blast was being treated as a fire and not believed to be related to the two bombings.

Denise Robson, a Canadian marathoner, spoke to CBC News from her hotel room in Boston.

"We’re shocked, we’re absolutely shocked. We went downstairs, we immediately came up, turned the TV on and then all of us called our family, friends, loved ones to say ‘We are ok, like we are fine. Spread the message that we’re okay,’ It’s very, very scary," she said.

Denise Robson, a Canadian marathoner, spoke to CBC News from her hotel room in Boston. (Facebook)

"We had all already finished, thankfully, and my friend Victoria who was watching, she was sitting directly across from the John Hancock stands where the explosion took place and once she saw us all come in — I mean we’re staying at the Fairmont Copley [hotel] which is directly across from the medic tent, like directly across. So just moments away from the finish line we are."

Francine Comeau of Beaver Bank told CBC News that she had finished the race about a minute before the explosions went off behind her.

"Everybody was begging to borrow everybody else's phone and I finally found a phone that worked, because you couldn't get a connection. When I found a phone that worked I sent [my family] a text but within a minute I saw my family arrive and of course everyone is crying when you seen each other because you realize what could have happened," she said.

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About three hours after the winners crossed the line, there was a loud explosion on the north side of Boylston Street, just before the photo bridge that marks the finish line. Another thunderous explosion could be heard a few seconds later.

Smoke rose from the blasts, fluttering through the national flags lining the route of the world's oldest and most prestigious marathon. TV helicopter footage showed blood staining the pavement in the popular shopping and tourist area known as the Back Bay. 

Boston Police Department Commissioner Ed Davis said that around 2:50 p.m., simultaneous explosions occurred near the finish line — about 45 to 90 metres apart — that resulted in "multiple casualties."

Davis said that no other explosion devices have been found so far, but that any parcel left along the race route is being treated as suspicious.

Earlier, Boston police had said two people had been killed and 23 injured but Davis wouldn't confirm any numbers. Other media reports put the injury totals at up to 100 people.

Competitors and race organizers were crying as they fled the chaos. Bloody spectators were being carried to the medical tent that had been set up to care for fatigued runners.

One runner, a state police officer from neighbouring Rhode Island, said he saw at least two dozen people with very serious injuries, including missing limbs.

People in Nova Scotia with loved ones at the Boston Marathon are hoping for their safety.

There are 97 Nova Scotians registered to take part in the Boston Marathon — with 33 of them from Halifax — according to the race’s registration database.

Ashley Burne sent a message to CBC News Nova Scotia, saying that she's praying for Canadian Kim Scattolon from Glace Bay, N.S.

"Canadian in the Race ... Kim Scattolon from Glace Bay N.S., she finished the race, her number was #16297. Praying she is okay."