Strong explosion rocks building in Central Madrid; 4 dead
Madrid, Jan 20: A massive explosion hit a residential building in central Madrid on Wednesday, killing four people and ripping the facade off the structure.
"Nine fire crews and 11 ambulances have gone to Calle Toledo following an explosion in a building," local emergency services tweeted.
Emergency services have been rushed to the spot in the heart of the Spanish capital city.
Videos and images shared on social media showed a tower of smoke coming out from a building and rubble scattered in a central street of Madrid. Spanish public broadcaster TVE said the explosion took place in a building near a nursing home.
Leire Reparaz, who lives near the Puerto de Toledo, a local landmark, told The Associated Press that she heard a loud explosion.
"We didn''t know where the sound came from. We all thought it was from the school. We went up the stairs to the top of our building and we could see the structure of the building and lots of grey smoke," the 24-year-old Madrid resident said.
At least 11 people were injured in the explosion, one seriously, the Madrid emergency service said in a tweet.
The Spanish government's representative for the Madrid region, José Manuel Franco, confirmed three casualties and the Catholic parish that owned the damaged building said the fourth victim was an electrician, a father of four, who was working on the boiler and had initially been considered missing.