ATM blown up inside Chinese restaurant in West Philadelphia

Wednesday, October 11, 2023
ATM blown up inside Chinese restaurant in West Philadelphia
ATM blown up inside Chinese restaurant in West Philadelphia

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- An ATM explosion rocked a West Philadelphia restaurant early Wednesday morning.

Someone blew up a machine inside a Chinese restaurant at 57th and Arch streets in order to steal cash.

The investigation is now being handled by the ATF, the Philadelphia Fire Marshal's Office and the Philadelphia Police Bomb Squad.

The ATF says one man, working alone, entered the store just before midnight and placed a device inside the ATM.

Officials described the device as a cardboard tube consistent with an illegal 'M-device' explosive.

The ATF said once the man placed the device in the ATM, the machine exploded.

Due to the damage to the machine, they are still working to determine if any money was taken.

One employee was inside the restaurant at the time of the explosion, but officials say that person was not hurt. They also told Action News there is no damage to the building.

No arrests have been made.

"The problem we have is that ATM crime is very easy and it's very low-risk," David Tente, the president of the ATM Security Association, told Action News on Wednesday.

Tente also said ATM attacks are on the rise.

"ATM crime in general is up 600% since 2019. The pandemic was a real boost. We saw a big increase, especially in physical crime during that period," he explained.

In regards to ATM explosions, Tente said they are rare.

The ATF said there have been approximately four ATM explosions in the city of Philadelphia in the past few months.

At this time, officials said there is no information that links Tuesday night's explosion to prior events.