Ithaca Police say two people are recovering from injuries suffered in a small explosion in a beverage container return machine they were using inside the front lobby at the Wegmans off South Meadow Street around 6:00 p.m. Wednesday.
Ithaca Police Public Information Officer Jamie Williamson says a husband and wife were taken to the hospital. "They had bruising and swelling of the face as well as some tingling in the torso area, injuries that can be described as minor, but we needed to get them checked out," said Williamson.
At this point, police do not know what caused the small explosion inside the bottle and can return machine.
"We are going to treat this as a criminal investigation right now simply because we have nothing to indicate that it is not criminal in nature," said Williamson .
Police say they have no reason to believe there was a mechanical problem with the machine. Police are reviewing Wegmans security camera footage to determine if someone placed something in the machine that was designed to cause the blast.
In a prepared news release Wednesday night, police pointed out that "there are no indicators of a chemical or biological agent having been used."
Police say the store didn't close but customers were diverted away from the scene of the explosion to another entrance.
(Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.)