Gas cylinder explosion in Ankara kills 2, injures 4

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Two people were killed and four others were injured in an explosion at a building in the capital Ankara early on Friday. The explosion was caused by a gas cylinder used for cooking, officials said.

Two people killed are identified as Muhammed Kahtan, 35, and his 2-year-old daughter Melek. His 5-year-old son and his pregnant wife were pulled out alive from the rubble and taken to hospital. Anadolu Agency (AA) reported that Kahtan moved to Turkey five years ago and worked in a car repair shop.

Yasin Murat, one of the building’s tenants, said it felt “like an earthquake”. “I heard something collapsing and heard people screaming from outside. I saw the police calling for us to leave the building. The windows were broken but there was no other damage in our apartment. I tried to leave the apartment but the door was stuck. The firefighters had to break it down and save me and my family,” he said.

The loud blast knocked down much of the three-story building in the city’s Keçiören district. Ambulances and search and rescue teams rushed to the scene. Search and rescue teams searched the rubble for hours on Friday morning.

Rescue workers pull an injured person from the rubble, in the capital Ankara, Turkey, November 19, 2021. (AA PHOTO)

Speaking to reporters at the scene, Ankara Governor Vasip Şahin said the explosion took place as a result of LPG trapping and a detailed statement would be released later after necessary analysis. . Ankara Mayor Mansur Yavaş told reporters later on Friday that the blast was confirmed to be the result of a gas cylinder exploding. He said that although natural gas was available in the building, there was no natural gas connection in the apartment. Crews were sent to demolish the building hours after the survivors and dead were removed as the explosion rendered it uninhabitable.

According to the media, the explosion occurred simultaneously in the kitchens of all the apartments in the building.

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