Sunday, February 24, 2013

Several dead in Vietnam house explosions

Firefighters search for survivors following twin blasts that tore through a residential street in Ho Chi Minh City on February 24, 2013. (VIETNAM NEWS AGENCY/AFP - Vietnam News Agency)
Several people were killed when twin blasts tore through a residential street and destroyed three houses in south Vietnam early Sunday, police said, with reports putting the death toll at around 10.

"We have been informed of two explosions this morning that killed about ten people... but we need to check the exact number of the victims," a local policeman told AFP following the blasts, which left many more victims trapped in rubble, according to reports.

The policeman said authorities were investigating the cause of the explosions in a district of the southern metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City, adding that they were believed to have been accidental.

State mouthpiece Tuoi Tre newspaper reported on its website that a family of seven was among those killed and many people remained trapped in the rubble.

It said local people heard two large explosions within five minutes of each other -- causing shockwaves that rattled homes up to several hundred metres away. They discovered three homes ablaze and partially destroyed.

Hundreds of firefighters on more than a dozen fire trucks rushed to the scene and were leading rescue efforts, the newspaper said.-Channel News Asia (February 24, 2013 1644hrs)

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