Two boys – aged 11 and 13 – are in hospital with serious injuries after playing with a homemade bomb which exploded in north Queensland.

Two boys – aged 11 and 13 – have serious injuries after a homemade bomb they were playing with detonated on a property in a rural suburb of Townsville.

Police are investigating the cause of the explosion about 4pm on Thursday at Hervey Range in north Queensland.

Officers believe the boys “were playing with what is believed to be a homemade incendiary device when it has detonated”.

The 11-year-old boy has serious hand and facial injuries, while the 13-year-old has leg injuries. Both were taken to Townsville Hospital.