Firefighters work at the site of an explosion in central Gothenburg. (Photo: Bjorn Larsson Rosvall / TT News Agency / AFP)
Four people were seriously injured in an explosion and fire in a central residential area in the Swedish city of Gothenburg on Tuesday morning.
The immediate cause of the explosion and fire was unclear.
At least 16 people were taken to hospital after firefighters pulled people out of a residential block from which smoke was rising.
Three women and a man were treated for serious injuries, said a spokesperson for Sahlgrenska University Hospital.
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Swedish public service radio SR reported that around 25 people had been taken to hospitals around Sweden’s second largest city.
Police say they have opened an investigation but could not give more details.
Emergency services said they were working to evacuate people and put out fires in the building. They ruled out a gas leak but refrained from speculating on the cause of the explosion.
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Anja Almen, who lives in the building, said she heard noise on the street just after 5:00 a.m. – about 15 minutes after the explosion.
“I walked out onto the balcony and was shocked. There was smoke everywhere, at every stairwell,” she said by phone from a nearby church to which she and other tenants. were evacuated. “Fire trucks with ladders were pulling people from the apartments.”
An emergency services spokesperson said several hundred people had been evacuated from the vicinity of the explosion and fire.
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