December 7th, 2011
03:39 PM ET
The Discovery Channel's San Francisco-based series "MythBusters" caught some California residents by surprise when a cannonball accidentally tore through a neighborhood during filming.
The San Francisco Chronicle reports that the television show was taping an experiment Tuesday afternoon at the Alameda County Sheriff's Department bomb disposal range. The paper describes the scene as involving large containers filled with water and a homemade, cantaloupe-sized cannonball.
When the cannonball was fired, it missed the water containers and instead blasted through a wall and bounced its way into a suburban neighborhood about 700 yards east, the paper says.
The cannonball had quite a trajectory, shooting through the front door of a family's home and sailing through one of the bedrooms before crash-landing into a minivan occupied by a father and his 13-year-old son.
According to Entertainment Weekly, no one was injured in the accident but the car and the home have been damaged. (The Chronicle noted that the cannonball left a "perfectly round hole in the stucco" of the house, right next to a second-floor window.)
In a statement to EW, Discovery and the production company for "MythBusters" explain that "During the testing, a cannonball took an unforeseen bounce from a safety berm," and that a bomb technician that works for the Alameda County Sheriff's office was on hand to assist.
"All proper safety protocol was observed," the statement says. "Beyond Productions is currently assessing the situation and working with those whose property was affected."
The Chronicle notes that "MythBusters," which has previously used the Alameda County Sheriff's Department's bomb disposal range without any mishaps, does have insurance in case of accidents. The show doesn't pay for use of the space, but does donate to the department in addition to giving it exposure.
UPDATE 6:25 p.m. – Discovery released the following statement:
"Everyone at MythBusters, Beyond Productions and Discovery Channel is incredibly thankful that no one was injured and are very sorry for the disruption that this has caused for both the families affected, and the entire community of Dublin. The comfort and safety of the families affected is our utmost concern. We have offered immediate housing and transportation assistance and will continue to assess their needs. We are cooperating fully with investigators, and are currently assessing yesterday’s incident to ensure an incident like this does not happen again."
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