2015 July: Brisbane ‘Pest Bomb’ Explosion.

‘Large volume’ of pest bombs cause explosion at Brisbane restaurant, buckling front wall and blowing off rear door


Brisbane restaurant owners have inadvertently caused an explosion at their shop after overusing pest bombs.

Authorities were called to the Glamorous Wok at Sunnybank just after 10pm and found the bottom section of the front wall buckled out and rear door blown off.

The owners had planted 24 cans of pest repellent inside the store.

Acacia Ridge Fire and Emergency Services station officer Michael Yates said they were originally told the owners had laid “some 12 pest bombs inside the premises”.

“I sent a couple fire-fighters in with atmospheric test equipment and a thermal imaging camera to make sure there was no residue vapours; there wasn’t any signs of fire. Police then did a secondary sweep of the building and found 24 pest bombs,” Mr Yates said.

“There is structural damage to the restaurant … the front door was buckled out and the rear door was blown out.”

He said pest bomb explosions were not very common.

“This [kind of explosion] usually happens with a gas leak. I haven’t in my 20-year career seen a pest bomb explosion,” Mr Yates said.

“What happens with these they have hydrocarbon propellant within the aerosol and they go up into the air and kill the bugs but they’re extremely flammable and may present an explosion hazard.

Obviously if you’re going to set off 24 that’s a large volume of propellant so it obviously found an ignition source and caused an vapour explosion which expands out with a sudden rush, which is why the front of the restaurant buckled out.”