Nineteen People Injured After Explosion in New York City's East Village
According to the latest available information, 19 people were injured in the explosion in an apartment building in Manhattan, New York on Thursday evening.
More than 200 firefighters were involved in the evacuation process, the BBC reported.
Reportedly, the incident occurred shortly after 3 pm local time as flames started soaring from the building located on Second avenue and Seventh Street in East Village.
The neighborhood is generally peaceful, abundant with small businesses, restaurants and apartments.
"Most of the people were running out of the building and climbing down the fire escape," stated Moishe Perl- owner of nearby Moishe’s Bake Shop, Reuters reported.
Ben Mackinnon, 28, who was drinking coffee in a nearby location stated that the door of the cafe he was in blew wide open on account of the blast.
The Mayor of the city, Bill de Blasio announced at a news conference that there is no information on missing persons, but emphasiezed the severity of the situation.
Officials revealed that a local company had been working on the building's gas system earlier that day, and that a sushi restaurant is located at the ground level. They, however, refrained from stating hypotheses on the cause for the time being.
"That building is in danger of possible collapse," said Fire Commissioner Daniel Nigro in an interview for Reuters. He added that this could also happen to the two adjacent buildings.
A relocation center has been established for people whose homes were affected by the fire in the nearby elementary school, stated Red Cross spokesperson Josh Lockwood.
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