Myyrmanni bombing

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Myyrmanni bombing
Myyrmannin räjähdys.jpg
Aftermath of the explosion
LocationVantaa, Finland
DateOctober 11, 2002
Deaths7 (including the perpetrator)
PerpetratorPetri Gerdt

The Myyrmanni bombing took place on October 11, 2002, in Myyrmäki, Vantaa, Finland, in Greater Helsinki, at the Myyrmanni shopping mall.[1] A bomb, hidden in a backpack, exploded in the central square of the shopping center on top of a metal waste container, located in the center of the square, at 19:36. Five people were killed immediately, including the bomb carrier. The waste container was shattered, and fragments of the structure increased the amount of shrapnel and the devastation. The explosion ruined 400 m² of the shopping center, carved a 10-cm deep crater in the floor where the waste container had stood and blew the glass dome over the square up and outwards from the mall. In total seven died, including two teenagers and a 7-year-old. 159 were injured, including 10 children. 66 victims required hospitalization with the remainder treated and released at the scene.[2] The bombing took place during the pre-weekend shopping surge late on a Friday afternoon, with 1,000–2,000 people in the shopping center, including many children who had come to see a clown performance.[3]


The bomb carrier was Petri Erkki Tapio Gerdt (April 17, 1983 – October 11, 2002), who was killed in the explosion. He was a quiet 19-year-old chemical engineering student at EVTEK (Espoo-Vantaa Institute of Technology) and a hobbyist bomb-maker. Gerdt was known to have had no notable friends. He played basketball and had no prior criminal record.[3] He was also an active member of Kotikemia (lit. "home chemistry"), an online forum for amateur chemists.[3] The moderator of Kotikemia was acquitted of responsibility in court. The explosive device was likely constructed in Gerdt's apartment. It was a 1.5 liter plastic bottle that contained ammonium nitrate and nitromethane with shotgun pellets and weighed about 2–3 kilograms (4.4–6.6 lb). Investigations revealed that some kind of a timer was also used.[2][4][5] Kotikemia was shut down by the authorities following the bombing.


The Finnish NBI investigated the event as six accounts of murder, one account of aggravated criminal mischief and one account of an explosives offence. The case was closed in January 2003 without any indictments as Gerdt was the sole suspect. Gerdt's motive for the bombing was not ascertained during the investigation.[4][5] There was no evidence found that Gerdt had links to any outside groups or to any international terrorist organizations.[1]

Myyrmanni (2011)


The bombing was especially shocking for Finland and the other Nordic countries, where bombings are extremely rare.[3]


On October 15, 2002 a national day of mourning was held throughout Finland. Some government buildings were closed, a moment of silence was held in the Parliament and flags ordered to be flown at half staff.[1] The shopping center was closed for repairs for nearly three weeks before re-opening later in October.[6]


Petri Gerdt's father, Armas, wrote the book Petrin matka Myyrmanniin ("Petri's Road to Myyrmanni") about the incident.[7]


  1. ^ a b c Lyall, Sarah (October 15, 2002). "Teenager Held In Bombing That Killed 7 At Finnish Mall". The New York Times Company. Retrieved October 11, 2015.
  2. ^ a b Torkki, Markus; Virve Koljonen; Kirsi Sillanpää1; Erkki Tukiainen; Sari Pyörälä; Esko Kemppainen; Juha Kalske; Eero Arajärvi; Ulla Keränen; Eero Hirvensalo (August 2006). "Triage in a Bomb Disaster with 166 Casualties". European Journal of Trauma. 32 (4): 374–80. doi:10.1007/s00068-006-6039-8. S2CID 32968659.
  3. ^ a b c d Örtenwall, Per; Almgren, Ola; Deverell, Edward (2003). "The bomb explosion in Myyrmanni, Finland 2002". International Journal of Disaster Medicine. 1 (2): 120. doi:10.1080/15031430310029062. ISSN 1503-1438.
  4. ^ a b Leino, Piia (January 31, 2003). "Esitutkinta varmisti Myyrmannin räjäyttäjän toimineen yksin". (in Finnish). Retrieved May 6, 2018.
  5. ^ a b "Verkkouutiset - Arkisto - Myyrmannin räjäyttäjä toimi yksin". January 31, 2003. Retrieved May 6, 2018.
  6. ^ "Vantaa shopping centre reopened.(Myyrmanni shopping center reopens following bomb attack". Nordic Business Report. Nordic Business Forum. October 30, 2002. Archived from the original on November 2, 2012. Retrieved October 11, 2015 – via
  7. ^ Gerdt, Armas (2004). Petrin matka Myyrmanniin (in Finnish) (1st ed.). [Helsinki]: Gummerus. ISBN 9789512065691. Retrieved October 11, 2015 – via Google Books.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 60°15′36.5″N 24°51′12″E / 60.260139°N 24.85333°E / 60.260139; 24.85333