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Suspected gas blast destroys Japan restaurant, injures dozens

Suspected gas blast destroys Japan restaurant, injures dozens

The explosion occurred in the late hours of the evening and was initially thought to have come from an izakaya restaurant, but police are now suggesting it may have originated at agency Apaman Shop next door, according to CNA.

Forty-two people have been injured in a suspected gas explosion at a restaurant in Japan, according to police and local media.

The cause of the blast was still under investigation, police said, but there were reports that it may have been a gas leak.

Meanwhile, Laurel expressed the Embassy's sympathies to those who were affected by the explosion through a letter to Hokkaido Gov. Harumi Takahashi.

The cause of the explosion, which occurred around 8:30 p.m. local time, is unknown, and emergency services continue to investigate.

The windows of condominiums and restaurants near the site, which is located close to a subway station in the Hokkaido capital, were shattered and wood debris was scattered dozens of meters away.

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A subsequent fire caused one building to collapse.

Police said 42 people were injured, a lot of them mildly, though one was in serious condition. Administrative guidance had been repeatedly issued over the last two years, but no improvements had been made by the tenants, it said.

"The ceiling fell, then the entire upper floor collapsed and we were all stuck".

One man suffered burns to his face but his life was not in danger, the police said.

A witness told NHK that he smelled gas after the sound of an explosion.

Several people were rushed to hospital by ambulance following the blast.