Paris gas explosion: At least 24 injured

One person is still missing and four are in critical condition after dozens were injured in a powerful explosion in a building in central Paris.

The explosion at around 4:55pm local time on Wednesday at the Paris American Academy on Rue Saint-Jacques left 37 people injured.

The blast sparked a fire that sent smoke soaring over the French capital’s monuments and prompted an evacuation of other properties, authorities said.

Officials are exploring a possible gas leak as the explosion but Paris police spokesperson Loubna Atta said it was too early to determine the source of the fire and could not confirm reports it was caused by a gas explosion.

Huge plumes of black smoke swelled into the air over the surrounding neighbourhood, but the fire was quickly brought under control.

“The explosion was extremely violent,” said Florence Berthout, mayor for the fifth arrondissement of the city, where the explosion happened.

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Rescuers search for person feared missing under rubble

French rescue workers are searching for a person feared missing in the rubble after a powerful blast ripped through a street in central Paris, injuring more than 30 people – four of them critically.

The blast started fires and caused the collapse of the facade of a building housing a design school. At least 37 people were injured,

Some of the four critically injured people suffered severe burns, said health minister Francois Braun. One person who was feared missing has been found.

Oliver O’Connell22 June 2023 14:40

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Paris explosion in pictures

(REUTERS)

(AFP via Getty Images)

Oliver O’Connell22 June 2023 08:30

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Shweta Sharma22 June 2023 07:45

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Huge plumes of black smoke billow into Paris sky after gas explosion

Huge plumes of black smoke swelled in the air after an explosion in Paris yesterday.

Local French media reported that the blast, on rue Saint-Jacques in the fifth arrondissement, was caused by gas. Four people were left in critical condition after the blast.

Police spokesperson Loubna Atta said authorities have not confirmed if the fire was caused by a gas explosion.

The facade of one building fell into the street as a result of the blast, Reuters reported citing comments from a Paris police official.

Massive plumes of black smoke swell after explosion on busy Paris street

Shweta Sharma22 June 2023 07:00

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More than 20 injured after Paris explosion

The blast started fires and caused the collapse of the facade of a building housing a design school. Paris prosecutor Laure Beccuau said early indications were that the blast originated inside the building.

Paris police said four people were in a critical condition following the blast in the Latin Quarter, and rescue workers were searching for at least two missing people in the rubble.

Shweta Sharma22 June 2023 06:30

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Paris police investigating possible gas leak behind blast

A Paris official has said a gas leak could be behind the powerful explosion in a building but other officials were more cautious.

A judicial official said a gas explosion was one of the possible causes under investigation.

The explosion at around 4:55pm local time at the Paris American Academy on Rue Saint-Jacques left four people in critical condition with dozens victims injured while two remain unaccounted for, according to French Interior Minister Gérard Darmanin.

The blast ignited a fire that sent smoke soaring over the French capital’s monuments and prompting an evacuation of other properties, authorities said.

Shweta Sharma22 June 2023 05:45

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Witness says design school frequented by American students

The Times reports witness, Nathan Gomot, a waiter at a nearby cocktail bar saying: “It was an ordinary day. We were preparing for the [national] music festival this evening when we felt an enormous explosion. We looked out and saw debris all over the place. The façade of the building had fallen into the street and the block of flats opposite had also caught fire.”

He added that the design school was frequented by “Americans who come to learn about French fashion. We often serve them in this bar. When I see the state of the building, it is worrying.”

Oliver O’Connell22 June 2023 04:45

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Watch: Immediate aftermath of explosion

Oliver O’Connell22 June 2023 04:00

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‘Everything shook. The windows exploded’

Le Parisien has compiled a number of witness accounts that we have translated here:

Quentin, a student at the Ecole des Mines on the Boulevard Saint-Michel, was in front of the Val-de-Grâce at the time of the events.

“I heard a boom and I saw a ball of fire 20 or 30 metres high,” he says. “Then the building collapsed with a huge noise.”

The explosion was so strong, explains an employee of Catholic Education, whose headquarters is nearby, that she “felt it in (her) body almost like in a film”.

“I felt a big blast, like a shock wave,” says Loris, who works at Le Puzzle bar, about twenty metres from the scene of the disaster. “Everything shook. The windows exploded, the manholes rose. The building collapsed, everyone started running. The building opposite also caught fire.”

What followed the explosion was chaos says Maïa, 13, who was taking part in a karate class next door to the blast: “The fire alarm went off in the building and the teacher asked us to leave the premises. We didn’t know what was going on, there was a bit of panic. On leaving, we saw the flames rising very high, around ten metres.”

Oliver O’Connell22 June 2023 03:00

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Massive plumes of black smoke swell after explosion on busy Paris street

Oliver O’Connell22 June 2023 02:00


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