Two people died and 280 were injured when an explosion ripped through a Hong Kong department store on Saturday (October 14).
Two people died and 280 were injured when an explosion ripped through a Hong Kong department store on Saturday (October 14). Police identified the dead as a 42-year-old fireman and a 23-year-old woman. Seventy-two of the injured, including eleven firemen, were admitted to hospital.
The explosion occurred in the Japanese-owned Diamaru store shortly after a report that there was a strong small of gas in the area. Hundreds of lunchtime shoppers were in the sore at the time of the blast. However, most of those injured were people walking past the building. They were cut by flying glass.
The Hong Kong Fire Service Department launched an immediate investigation into the cause of the explosion, while the Police Department carried out their own private investigation.
SYNOPSIS: An explosion in this Hong Kong store on Saturday, left two people dead and two-hundred-and-eighty injured. The blast ripped through the building shortly after employees and customers complained of a strong smell of gas in the store. Terrified shoppers fled as the explosion brought down a wall, and sent shattered glass flying through the air.
Ten fire unites and one hundred firemen were rushed to the scene. Window displays were hurled out into the roadway, while car windscreens and windows of nearby buildings were shattered.
Many people staggered from the building and collapsed on the roadway. Every available ambulance on Hong Kong island ran a non-stop shuttle between the store and Tang Shiu Kin Hospital. Several people were asked to use private vehicles to get the injured to hospital for treatment. Those who died in the blast were a forty-two-year-old fireman, married with three children, and a twenty-three year-old woman cashier in the store.
Soon after the explosion, gas supplies to many parts of the island were cut off. Buildings in the immediate area were evacuated, while authorities attempted to find the source of the gas leak.