Fireworks Premature Ignition Launch Caused By $100k Computer's Error [VIDEO]

by Jerrico_Usher

30 Minutes worth of fireworks displays went off in 16 seconds due to a computer controlled glitch or a file corruption error- Some think it was a hacked system

Last night in SanDiego California hundreds of thousands of people in several separate locations gathered to watch the yearly fireworks spectacular but got something more spectacular (and shorter lived).

The 15-30 minute scheduled shows happened across 5 ordnance fired locations. Four were on the Sandiego Bay and one was on the Imperial Beach Pier, synchronized by a computer that actually does the firing and timing. I always thought it was people lighting these bad boys but apparently even fireworks, technically considered pyrotechnics, are computer controlled.


Best vantage point... more videos at the end

Oops The Computer Broke

When the computer glitch, file corruption, or hack, happened instead of the shows going off in all the different areas at timed and specific intervals to produce a show many are familiar with seeing every year, the opposite happened.

In 16 seconds and visible from far back all the fireworks went off simultaneously in each and all locations causing a scene that mimicked more of an atomic bomb going off all over the city than a dazzling display of coordinated effects!

The gigantic explosions saturated the skies with more light and sparks than a Garth Brooks concert just before 9pm.  News pages say nobody was hurt or killed in the debacle (whew).

The owner of the company that made the mistake was August Santore. The business is a family owned and run business. He expressed his embarrassment and hopes they will allow his company back next year but I doubt that will happen. He did offer to do next years show for free. If you ask me a nice change into a power pyrotechnics show would have been an awesome thing to witness, and the video below showing the whole thing, shows just how cool even far away viewers who couldn't make it to the individual shows was.

Mistakes happen and we can't really get mad at the company it happened to, after all, they did get a show and one they weren't expecting, and nobody got hurt. It will likely help in the sense that all companies of this nature will be very careful in the future when checking their software (at least when they figure out exactly what happened as they claim to have checked it very thoroughly before it happened).

There are apparently hundreds of thousands of vantage points/views recorded and uploaded to YouTube- one of the great things about our current times is that everyone has a cell phone or digital camera with them at all times so maybe they will find a way to stitch this together and make a movie from it!

A guy standing outside his Bait and Tackle shop witnessing the whole thing up close said it was "SUPER COOL!", and let's face it, how many times will any of us actually see something of this magnitude in our lives? It was a problem, it was embarrassing, but it was also amazing and cool, fantastical, and the epidemy of the word "BRILLIANT" as in bright and powerful.

Some witnesses said it looked like the sun was crashing towards earth!

It Was An Accident, Get Over It!

It took roughly 25 minutes before anyone moved thinking this was just a prelaunch show due to it's brevity, but for hours radio stations flooded with calls that went on the air of people venting about their annoyance and anger towards the problem.

I can understand the frustration because some plan for this all year and traffic can be a real problem getting in and out of there, but really people, you got a unique and powerful show that will be talked about for years- isn't that what we're all looking for anyway?

Leave your comments below... 

Some of the best uploaded videos of the show from different angles, distances, and some even up close and personal

Turn on your surround sound and Bass to really FEEL the show... Awesome!
Updated: 07/05/2012, Jerrico_Usher
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BrendaReeves on 07/09/2012

The fireworks were still beautiful. I missed this on the news. Thanks for the article.

Jerrico_Usher on 07/06/2012

Oh I have many takes on the situation. 1. I feel bad for the family owned company this happened to, it was an honest mistake but it's going to cost them in reputation and business, even though they did everything they could- it's likely some hacker snuck in and did it or found a way to corrupt a file- I don't think they should be chastised for it though, and people are being rediculous

2. I think the complainers and those people who got mad or irritated are really just being selfish, only thinking about themselves- I mean give me a break, chit happens, and they act like they are perfect human beings- this just happened to be more public but to not realize things happen and to chastize them for it is rediculous especially because...

3. This was a phenomenal thing, sure a mistake, but those that gathered close got one hell of a show didn't they? This is a nice change from the ordinary effects we see every year, I'm kinda bored of the normal display I'd of loved to be there myself just to say I was, and just to experience movie quality explosions in person!

2uesday on 07/06/2012

I saw the news footage of this and it made me think of a saying my grandma would have said -"What can go wrong, will go wrong." You have to feel a bit sorry for the people who are responsible for setting this up do n't you.
I would bet the people organizing our 2012 London Olympic displays are double checking the double checking after seeing this happen.

Jerrico_Usher on 07/06/2012

I was beside myself when I saw this on the news on tv, a quick youtube search (they mentioned there were vids) and I was excited- had to write about it... Our fireworks went off without a problem, 18 minutes of chest thumping cool- I can't imagine how it felt to stand in the vantage point in the first video- the "feeling" I bet was priceless! The several mushroom clouds vantage reminded me of Battle star galactica (or was it caprica) where they shot off all those nukes!

LOVE the car alarms in the video going off gave it demension

Sam on 07/06/2012

Great article, thumbs up and shared ;-) SY

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