Update via France24 – A powerful explosion and fire caused by a gas leak at a Paris bakery on Saturday killed two firefighters and a Spanish national and injured almost 50 others, according to French and Spanish authorities. A fourth victim was found in the rubble Sunday.
Earlier: Christophe Castaner, the interior minister, initially announced via twitter that two persons from the Paris Fire Department died.
About 200 firefighters had battled the blaze, and photos on social media showed people being rescued with a ladder after the explosion.
A Paris fire department spokesman says that 36 people, including 12 in critical condition, have been injured in the blast at a bakery that was apparently caused by a gas leak.
Paris fire department spokesman Eric Moulin told reporters at the scene that five people were in life-threatening condition, including two firefighters.
Paris prosecutor Remy Heitz said “at this stage we can say it seems from accidental origin, this would be a gas leak.” He said that Paris firefighters were already at the scene for a suspected gas leak on Saturday morning when the explosion happened. Investigations are ongoing to determine the exact cause of the blast.
Witnesses described the overwhelming sound of the blast. Charred debris and broken glass covered the pavement around the apartment building housing the bakery, which resembled a blackened carcass.
This is a developing story.
Sky News / Reuters