Rio de Janeiro: An explosion likely caused by
a gas leak ripped through a restaurant in downtown Rio de
Janeiro on Thursday, killing at least three people and injuring 13,
The explosion around 7:30 am caused heavy damage to the
restaurant, which wasn`t open, and to the apartments above it,
said Ronaldo Alcantara, the second in command of Rio`s fire
department, who was at the site of the explosion.
"The three fatal victims were flung outside the
building," Alcantara said.
Firefighters and the city`s civil defence department are
searching for more victims, though no people are known to be
missing, he said. And they are investigating the cause of the
explosion, though Alcantara said it was likely caused by a gas
The restaurant had been closed yesterday, a holiday, and
gas had probably leaked throughout the day and night. When the
restaurant`s first employees arrived this morning, they may
have somehow caused a spark that ignited the gas, said
Two of the victims have been identified as restaurant
employees, he said. Three of the injured are in serious
condition and have been taken to a local hospital.