An 88-year-old woman was killed and her 89-year-old husband was badly injured on Saturday during a garage explosion in the French city of Bordeaux, firefighters said.
Initial investigations indicate that the cause of the explosion was gas, which demolished the small building and heavily damaged two adjacent buildings.
After the explosion, the woman was identified as missing at around 8am in the Chartrons district of the western French city.
Firefighters said at about 4pm they found her body under debris.
According to city officials, her husband, an 89-year-old man, is fighting for her life.
Since then, a second individual initially identified as missing has come forward.
So far, following the blast, nine other individuals have been identified with minor injuries.
There were about 70 firefighters on the scene.
Sniffer dogs and equipment were used by the emergency services to clear the debris in their search.
A car park and garage on the ground floor and lodgings on the floor above were damaged by the blast.
By the impact of the explosion, the windows of many nearby shops were blown out.
Lucie Perrouault, 21, said that when the windows “exploded” she was afraid.
“The glass was blown on us from our window, we stepped on the glass, and my boyfriend was wounded,” she said.
Mael, 38, said she was “sleeping and I heard a big “boom,” my bay window blew up.”
“I went outside and saw that there was a blown-up apartment.”
Although gas supplies to the district were severed, “we do not yet know whether the explosion was caused by the gas network or canisters,” said Eric Destarac, a spokesman for gas distribution company Regaz.
Some gas bottles were retrieved by firefighters from the garage, he said.
SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN