PARIS – A big explosion exploded in a bakery in the center of Paris on Saturday morning, leaving smoke and flames and debris dispersed behind him and injuring several people, the authorities said.
The authorities claimed that the explosion was supposed to have
The Paris Prefecture of Police said on Twitter that a fire started initially in a shop in Rue de Trévise which is was then hit by a "strong explosion". About 200 firefighters fought the flames and social media photos showed firefighters helping people descend a ladder after the explosion.
The number of injured was not yet clear, but Christophe Castaner, the interior minister, told reporters on the site later on Saturday that the situation was "under control" but that the death toll could be "serious".
The explosion occurred while Paris and other cities around France were preparing Saturday urday for a ninth week of protests by the "Yellow Vests" movement, which was characterized by incidents of violence and vandalism in stores high-end. But there was no immediate indication that the Saturday explosion had anything to do with the protests.
The Yellow Vests are protesting against the social and economic policies of President Emmanuel Macron, who feel they are out of touch with their daily needs. But the demonstrations also turned into a bigger discontent with political and media elites.
The images on social media after the powerful explosion showed a blackened front at the corner between Rue Trévise and Rue Sainte Sécile, in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, with the windows turned off, the debris scattered in the street and fires still burning.
Other images showed damaged buildings and broken windows that stretched over several blocks.
a residential street in an area of Paris that is also well known to tourists, with many hotels and attractions nearby, including the Grévin wax museum and the Folies Bergère music room.
One person wrote on Twitter: "I woke up in the building trembling as if I had never left California … not an earthquake, but an explosion on Rue de Trévise not even a mile from me. "
Another person wrote of hearing screams .
Sylvain Maillard, a lawmaker representing the area, told the BFM television channel that the explosion was "accidental" and that "they were probably injured".
Residents told French television that firefighters had responded to the news of a gas leak in the neighborhood and ordered residents to shut off the gas supply and stay inside when the explosion occurred.
Many condominiums in Paris use gas for heating and other purposes, but deadly explosions because of losses are rare. In 2016, an explosion caused by a gas leak in the 6th arrondissement of Paris ripped off the roof of a condominium and wounded 17 people.