No further information immediately available.
Published Saturday, January 12, 2019
A powerful explosion tore through a bakery in central Paris on Saturday morning, killing at least two firefighters and leaving smoke, flames and scattered debris in its wake, the authorities said.
The police and city authorities said the blast, which occurred on Rue de Trevise, was believed to have been caused by a gas leak.
About 200 firefighters had battled the blaze. Eric Moulin, a Paris Fire Department spokesman, told reporters that at least 36 people had been injured by the explosion, including 12 seriously; three firefighters were among them.
Remy Heitz, the Paris prosecutor, said that the blast had been "manifestly accidental." He told reporters at the site, "First there was a gas leak, then the arrival of the firefighters, followed by an explosion that caused the fire."
The explosion came as Paris and other cities around France were bracing on Saturday for a ninth week of protests by the "Yellow Vests" movement, which had been marked by episodes of violence and vandalism of high-end stores.
But there was no indication that the explosion on Saturday had anything to do with the protests. The Yellow Vests are protesting the social and economic policies of President Emmanuel Macron, whom they consider to be out of touch with their everyday needs.
Paris explosion Facts
Affected Area: 1 km.
Alert Level: Green
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