A Minneapolis explosion left 13 people injured and a building in ruins. The explosion led to a fire which triggered three alarms at around 8:15 am this morning.
John Fruetel, the Minneapolis Fire Chief, said when crews arrived they found victims outside the building, and a massive fire on the second and third floor levels:
“Upon arrival crews made entry into the first floor of this structure. Conditions became untenable very quickly, with major fires coming out of the second and third floors. Crews had to back out and go into defensive position outside of the building, applying water.”
Fruetel also confirmed reports that a number of the injured people sustained their injuries by jumping out of second and third floor windows. Of the 13 injured people, all of whom have been hospitalized, six have been admitted with critical injuries.
Fruetel said that some people are still missing:
“Not everybody has been accounted for in this building. It is possible that some are still inside.”
Some disturbing video footage from the scene showed flames of about 20 feet coming from the structure as victims sat in the street trying to keep warm in coats, hats, and blankets.
Abdi Warasami, a member of a mosque situated behind the building where the Minneapolis explosion occurred, said the mosque itself may have also been damaged in the fire:
“The grocery store and apartments above have been damaged. And I think there is some damage to the mosque.This whole area is very significant to the community.”
Local authorities have set up a family center in the area where people can shelter, and find out more information about the Minneapolis explosion. Currently, police and fire department investigators are attempting to ascertain the cause.