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MythBusters make apologetic house call after cannon accident

In a move that showed their contrition, MythBusters hosts Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman showed up at the door of the Dublin, Calif., house that their crew had hit with cannon fire yesterday to say sorry.

Daniel Terdiman Former Senior Writer / News
Daniel Terdiman is a senior writer at CNET News covering Twitter, Net culture, and everything in between.
Daniel Terdiman
3 min read
The hole in a Dublin, Calif., house that was caused by a cannonball fired by the MythBusters. Screenshot by CNET

It's not often that two world-famous TV stars drop by your house, but then again, it's not often that cannonballs come flying through your walls either.

On Wednesday, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, MythBusters hosts Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman personally stopped by to apologize to the residents of the Dublin, Calif., house that crew members of their show had accidentally hit with their cannon fire a day earlier.

In a tweet this afternoon, Savage addressed the situation. "It's true, a cannonball got away from a Mythbusters experiment in Dublin, CA," Savage tweeted first. "Nobody hurt thank goodness. Jamie and I toured the damage."

Then, a little later, Savage added: "Now it's back to SF, to meet and discuss how to keep this from ever happening again. Very intense. We're SUPER relieved no one was hurt."

MythBusters: 4 minutes of science, 10 minutes of injuries (images)

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During their visit to the Dublin home of Hitha Shetty this afternoon, it seems that Savage and Hyneman were full of contrition as they toured the wreckage from the misfire. As reported by the Chronicle:

"Come in," said...Shetty, 39, ushering show hosts Jamie Hyneman and Adam Savage across a floor still speckled with paint and plaster.

Behind Shetty was damage more likely to be found on a pirate ship than a two-story tract home. A round hole scarred an interior wall and, beyond that, another hole showed where the cannonball had exited the upstairs master bedroom as Shetty's wife, Seema, napped with the couple's 2-year-old son.

After assuring Shetty, his two children, his wife and her parents that they would never again blast a home with heavy ordnance, Hyneman and Savage said the incident was the worst thing that had happened during thousands of experiments over eight years on the Discovery Channel show.

They also promised they wouldn't air the footage they had filmed of the near-catastrophic cannon shot.

"It's a wake-up call," said Savage, 44, who like his 56-year-old partner lives in San Francisco. "Honestly, the feeling of embarrassment is not something we're indulging in right now. We feel for the families and the people affected by this."

According to the Chronicle, neither Savage nor Hyneman was present when the cannon misfired at a bombing range that the show often uses when filming experiments. Instead, the show's other three hosts, Tory Bellici, Kari Byron, and Grant Imahara "had been 'calibrating' a homemade cannon, firing a ball made of either steel or cast iron into water barrels and a brick wall to make sure it had the same power as a historical cannon." The idea was to find out if the cannon was capable of firing a shot through a castle's walls. Instead, they breached the walls of Shetty's home.

Although this was the first time that the hugely popular show had been responsible for such damage to anyone's personal property, it's hardly the show's first mishap. Indeed, MythBusters has a long history of accidents, although they have generally been minor, and any injuries were to cast members only.

A tweet about the cannonball incident from MythBusters host Adam Savage. Screenshot by CNET

Either way, it's a great public relations move for Savage and Hyneman to stop by the Shetty household to say they're sorry. It's also something totally in keeping with the personalities of the two stars, who, while being world famous, are also extremely down to earth.

Now, the show's hosts and producers have to find a way to repair not just the damage to the Shettys' home, but also the MythBusters' reputation. Certainly, the fact that no one was hurt will make it easier. But there's little doubt that everyone involved with the show will be eager for the time when no TV stars have to be making house calls in Dublin.