Argentina: Natural Gas Leak Causes Deadly Residential Blast

7 Aug


by Jonathan Gilbert / NY Times

Twelve people died and at least 60 more were injured, officials said Tuesday, in an explosion in the center of Rosario, Argentina’s third largest city, with 1.2 million people. A gas leak from the ground floor of a residential building caused the blast on Tuesday morning, Mónica Fein, the mayor of Rosario, confirmed. Witnesses said it felt like an earthquake. “I woke up and there were no walls,” said Franco Járiton, who lived on the seventh floor. News channels showed that the middle block of the building, which was nine stories tall, had collapsed. There are fears that two adjoining blocks, which are badly damaged, will also fall. Fifteen people were missing. Neighbors said they had called the provincial gas company hours before the explosion, warning of a strong gas smell. The company, Litoral Gas, said it had not received any calls.

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