SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) – A planned explosion at a rock quarry owned by Burlington International Airport went awry Wednesday, spraying rocks onto cars, planes and buildings.

No one was hurt, officials said.

“What was scheduled to be a very small blast that no one would notice scattered large pieces of rock about 300 yards from the blast site,” said airport Manager Brian Searles.

Some of the rocks were described as being the size of microwave ovens.

The rocks hit four small airplanes, up to eight vehicles and at least five buildings, Searles said.

South Burlington police estimated the damage at several hundred thousand dollars.

The quarry is on land owned by the airport and is part of a 15-acre area that is being readied for expansion. The quarry, a source of revenue for the airport, had been scheduled to shut down at the end of the month to open up more parking spaces, although operations could resume in the spring, Searles said.

Searles said workers spent the afternoon cleaning up the mess.

“We’ve got to sort out what’s happened and who’s responsible,” Searles said. “We also want to know what kind of mistake was made and how can it be prevented.”

AP-ES-09-24-08 1738EDT


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