Boston Police are now saying JFK Library incident appears to be fire related.
UPDATE: 23 injured and 2 dead according to Boston Police.
From the Globe Metro staff: Two people were killed and dozens were injured this afternoon as two powerful explosions detonated in quick succession near the Boston Marathon finish line in Boston’s Back Bay section, turning a scene of athletic celebration into bloody chaos.
Two more explosive devices were found and dismantled, The Associated Press reported. The Federal Aviation Administration announced a ground stop for Logan International Airport until further notice; it wasn’t clear if the ground stop was related to the blasts.
Asked if the explosions were a result of terrorism, Davis said, “We’re not being definitive on this right now, but you can reach your own conclusions, based on what happened.’
From the Globe Staff: The Federal Aviation Administration has lifted a temporary ground stop that halted inbound flights to Logan International Airport, the agency said. Following explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, the FAA halted all inbound flights for about half an hour while the agency reconfigured the runways to keep aircraft from flying over Copley Square. Earlier, the agency imposed a temporary flight restriction above Copley Square in order to allow medical aircraft to evacuate victims. That flight restriction remains in effect. The ground stop isn’t expected to cause delays at Logan, airport officials said.
Mayor's office tips hotline: 617-635-4500, or call 1-800-494-TIPS
From Globe Correspondent Justin A. Rice: Nelson Pereira, 36, of Dorchester was limping out of a VIP tent in Copley square just before 5:30 p.m. when police finally told him he could head home.
Pereira, who was running the Boston Marathon for the first time to raise money for Leukemia, was running through Boston College when he said he heard the explosion. He took the Orange Line to Copley Square to get his bag with his stuff because the Green Line was shut down.
But police told him he couldn’t leave Copley Square and he said he had no cell phone in his bag.
“I know a lot of my family is trying to get a hold of me,” he said as him limped out of the tent.” So they don’t know if I’m alright or not and I heard that two people got killed and 25 people got hurt. We heard the explosion. I ran basically 20 something miles.”
When asked about the fact that he could have been at the finish line during the explosion he said: “That’s crazy, I’m smiling but that’s crazy."
From the BAA: 4,496 crossed 40K, but didn't finish. 1,246 others trailing that number and were diverted.
Tweet from Mayor Menino's Deputy Press Secretary John M. Guilfoil: @mayortommenino Will hold a press briefing at 6 p.m.
President Obama will be speaking at 6:10 p.m.
From the Globe's Michael B. Farrell and Erin Ailworth: The heavy volume of mobile phone calls around downtown Boston following explosions at the Boston Marathon has clogged cell service, blocking many from getting through to people at the scene.
“We are experiencing call blocking due to what’s happening,” said Mark Elliott, a Sprint spokesman. “The network is blocking calls because the number of calls coming in exceeds the capacity.”
He didn’t know what the exact volume of calls has been since the explosions occurred, but said many thousands of calls made at the same time can overwhelm cell towers in the area. “There’s no way the network can handle that kind of traffic,” he said.
There have been numerous reports of many people not able to get through to their family and friends at the marathon.
In a statement, AT&T said: “As we coordinate with local officials, customers in the area may be experiencing issues with wireless voice and data service due to a spike of network activity and related congestion. We recommend customers use text messaging for emergencies. We also advise customers to keep non-emergency calls to a minimum. To help, our temporary Wi-Fi turned up for the Boston Marathon will remain on for an extended timeframe.”
Elliott of Sprint said that mobile phone users should text the people they are trying to reach in the area instead of calling to free up the mobile networks for emergency uses.
Verizon Wireless, meanwhile, issued a statement, saying: “Verizon Wireless has been enhancing network voice capacity to enable additional calling in the Copley Square area of Boston. Customers are advised to use text or email to free up voice capacity for public safety officials at the scene. There was no damage to the Verizon Wireless network, which is seeing elevated calling and data usage throughout the region since the explosions occurred.”
WBZ: Boston Police: "No one is in custody at this point."
From Globe Correspondent Seth Lakso: Walking towards what was the finish line of the Boston Marathon just twenty minutes following the first two explosions, the streets were filled with racers and their families making their way away from Copley. Many of the people were in tears, or on their phones reassuring loved ones that they were safe.
The streets were completely empty and cordoned off surrounding Copley Plaza.
The medical tent was flanked by five ambulances facing down Huntington Ave. They loaded wounded two at a time, while medical personal were unable to say for sure where the wounded were heading.
Inside the tent sections were cordoned off and labeled: “triage, triage II, and morgue.”
The section labeled morgue was blocked from view.
In the triage area closest to the where the ambulances, I could see half a dozen wounded runners. One woman had half her head wrapped in a bandage. Two others had large wraps over their legs.
“[There were] a lot of lower leg injuries,” said B.A.A. Head Nurse Jeanette Corsini. “Obviously some pretty horrific injuries.”
At least 25 patients were moved via ambulance by Corsini’s estimate. “I don’t know though because [the ambulances] were back and forth,” she said.
Corsini then commended the work of the medical staff and first responders.
“Everyone’s done a great job, obviously this was totally unexpected,” she said. “I think that people came together. Thank god Boston EMS was here. But I think everyone fell right into place and did what they needed to do. This isn’t something you prepare for.”
Obama to speak at 6:10 p.m. from the White House about Boston Marathon explosions
Obama during press conference: "We're still in the investigation stage at this point."
From Globe Correspondent Justin A. Rice: Thirty-three buses worth of unclaimed runners bags can be claimed now on Berkley Street in Copley Square, according to race officials.
The bags will be left on the street till dark at which point they will be moved to a safe location.
From the Globe metro staff: A chaotic scene is unfolding at Boylston and Massachusetts Avenue, with officers blocking off the entrance to Boylston and bewildered runners and spectators calling relatives on their cell phones and trying to make their way out of the area.
Many people are crying, holding hands and locking arms as they navigate the sea of onlookers, police, and National Guard troops directing traffic.
One man got into an angry shouting match with an officer at the top of Boylston, telling him repeatedly, "I got family down there!"
But the officer refused to let the man through and threatened to arrest him if he did not turn around.
The man shouted, "I don't give a [care], I'll go back to prison" before friends led him away.
Karyn Ragonese, 40, of Charlestown, said she was at the 25 and 1/2 mile marker before the runners in front of her "came to a dead halt."
She said that when she heard about the explosions, "I just freaked out because I have a bunch of friends who came with me. I didn't know what the hell was going on. My dad was at the finish line."
She said all of her companions at the race, including her father, have been accounted for.
"A huge relief," she said. "I just called my sister."
Guests are allowed to leave Copley Plaza.