Explosion in central Paris: 17 injured, streets evacuated after side of building ripped off by blast, caused by gas leak

Catherine Neilan
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An explosion in central Paris has ripped off virtually the entire side of a seven-storey building this afternoon.

Streets and work places near to the explosion - which occurred in the sixth arrondissement, thought to be on the rue Bonapart - have been evacuated.

Other buildings nearby were also damaged.

In total 17 people were injured in the blast, which went off at around 12:30pm local time (11:30am UK time).

According to French paper Liberation, a firefighter was seriously injured; the other injuries were less severe.

Images posted online showed the residential building in flames and smoke rising above the Paris skyline.


Police have confirmed the blast was caused by a domestic gas leak, and is not an attack, local media is reporting.

However witnesses told local media of their fears that the blast had been caused by a bomb, with memories of the attacks which left 130 dead in November, and last week's attacks in Brussels, still fresh.

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