Vancouver police say a 13-year-old girl sustained serious injuries after a plastic bottle, which was tossed from a passing vehicle, exploded in her hands as she tried to throw the bottle away.
At about 7:40 p.m. Saturday, police responded to the area of Fort Vancouver Way and East 26th Street in Vancouver on reports of a small explosion.
The initial investigation indicated a green SUV was traveling on East 26th Street when someone inside that vehicle threw a plastic bottle on the ground and then drove off.
The girl, who is from Longview and was spending the day in Vancouver, saw this and went to collect the bottle to throw it away when it exploded, leaving her with deep cuts on her hands and arms.
“It was clear stuff that was inside and white smoke, that was what she was able to see before it exploded,” said the teen’s mother, Ashli Fortner.
Neighbor Gloria Rubio was in her yard at the time.
“I saw her pick up a bottle and heard like a firecracker, and that’s when she started panicking,” Rubio said. “I saw a lot of blood dripping and I saw the plastic in her hands, it was bad.”
Rubio said she comforted the teen and called 911. Medics took her to the hospital where she received several stitches and was sent home to recover.
“Thankfully I heard she’s doing OK and she’s doing better, but it could have been a lot worse,” said Rubio.
Neighbors and family are relieved the teen will be OK and now turn their focus to the people who did this.
“My message to them is karma always comes around,” said Fortner.
A Vancouver police arson investigator was at the scene and processed the evidence. Video footage was also provided to police.
Police said the incident being actively investigated.
Anyone with information is strongly encouraged to contact the Vancouver Police Department.