There are some scary images coming from Prague today after an explosion rocked the Czech capital's downtown area just after rush hour. And while the pictures of the injured look weirdly similar to the scene out of Boston two weeks ago — foil blankets, blood, and bandages in a major Western city — officials in Prague are saying the blast was actually a natural gas explosion. No deaths have been reported yet, and the authorities are still trying to determine the number injured — Bloomberg reports around 55, while The Wall Street Journal reports around 40 — and "rescue workers were still searching for people who may have been buried in the building shaken by the blast on Divadelni Street," Pavlina Adamcova, spokeswoman for the Prague fire department, told Bloomberg.
The first (bloody) images from the blast look like this:
The Prague explosion, officials insist, was a natural gas explosion. "The explosion was caused by gas," a police officer told The Wall Street Journal, which adds:
Police spokesman Tomas Hulan said the explosion occurred at around 9:56 a.m. local time and that an initial investigation suggests the explosion was caused by a leaking gas pipe.
The police can't confirm if anyone is buried in rubble inside the damaged building, Mr. Hulan said.