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One dead, 18 injured in explosion at major gas facility in Austria

Staff Writer |
One person has been killed and several injured in an explosion at Austria’s main gas pipeline hub, ORF news reports.

Fire engines, ambulances, and a rescue helicopter have reportedly been deployed to the area, and all work has been halted at the site.

"Eighteen people are injured and one is dead," police chief Markus Haindl said, as quoted by Sputnik. He added that "technical problems" caused the explosion, and that there was "no indication of terrorism."

Several media outlets previously put the number of people injured at around 60.

Gas Connect Austria, which works in partnership with OMV Group, has stated that one person is missing and 12 others injured, while Austrian police have denied that anyone was killed in the blast.

“An explosion occurred at 8:45am (local time), followed by a fire. Things are under control but according to preliminary reports there are several people injured,” police spokesman Edmund Tragschitz told AFP.

The blast occurred near Baumgarten, Gaenserndorf district. The underground pipeline belongs to the Vienna-based OMV group, which has confirmed that there was a gas explosion at the site.

“The [explosion] has created a fire,” Fire Brigade spokesman Franz Resperger said, as quoted by ORF. “There are miles of thick, black clouds of smoke.”

“Due to the enormous heat... cars are melted in the parking lot,” Resperger said.

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