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RV played recorded warning before explosion in downtown Nashville, police and witnesses say

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Posted at 1:38 PM, Dec 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-25 14:48:14-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Metro police and witnesses said an RV played a recorded message, warning anyone in the area to evacuate minutes before it exploded early Friday morning.

NewsChannel 5 spoke with a woman who evacuated with her family after hearing the message.

The woman said she lives in an apartment directly across from where the RV was parked. She recounted hearing very loud, repetitive gunshots sometime between 5 and 5:30 a.m., which she said could have been a recording of gunshots.

After calling 911 to report what she heard, the woman looked out of her windows and saw what she described as an older-looking RV parked directly across the street from her apartment.

She said after 5:30 a.m., the RV began playing a recording that stated "this vehicle has a bomb, if you can hear this message, you need to evacuate." The witness said this message played for about 30 minutes before changing to a countdown starting at 15 minutes to evacuate the area.

The woman reported seeing police in the area before she and her family evacuated and checked into a hotel. She said if it weren't for the warning and the sound of gunshots, she may have been killed or seriously injured by the explosion.

Video posted to YouTube appears to confirm the recorded message and shows the blast. Warning, some may find the video disturbing.