Doctor Trent Pierce was near his Lexus RX Hybrid when it suddenly exploded. He's now in critical condition. Initial reports suggested no foul play. What could cause a hybrid powertrain to explode? A bomb!
The helicopter video of the vehicle, which appears to be a Lexus RX 450h, shows the hood completely bent upwards suggesting a major blast. According to another doctor interviewed by MSNBC, Dr. Pierce had walked to his car to warm it up before his drive to work, turned to walk away and then was hit with the impact.
The first reaction from people is going to be to assume the hybrid powertrain had something to do with the explosion. However, what about a hybrid would cause the engine bay to explode? Well, other than the big gasoline engine —
which is more than likely what may have caused the explosion. Especially since the batteries are in the back.
Of course now we're hearing the ATF suspects foul play, so maybe it was a bomb of some sort. We'll keep tuned in to what's happening.
UPDATE: Both the West Memphis, Arkansas police and the ATF have confirmed it was in fact a bomb, not the fault of the hybrid or non-hybrid system