Two Buildings Have Collapsed In Upper Manhattan After Explosion, Following Reports Of A Gas Leak
On Wednesday, two buildings dramatically collapsed in the East Harlem neighborhood of New York, located in Upper Manhattan, following a loud explosion at about 9.30 ET. Smoke could be seen billowing from midtown, at least 50 blocks down from the explosion in a building on 116th Street and Park Avenue. Seven people have died; at least 24 people have been reported injured; and others may not be accounted for, according to reports. In a press conference, mayor Bill de Blasio said a gas leak was almost certainly to blame.
The New York Fire Department and other emergency services reported that they were attending the scene — 39 units and 168 members, to be exact, according to the Guardian.
Con Edison were working to shut off the gas in the area, according to ABC News, and police called a Level 2 mobilization for crowd control. It's speculated that the fire might have spread to other buildings in the area, and there appear to be broken windows in nearby buildings. The New York Times reported that emergency services were attending to people trapped in the rubble.
At the moment, nothing about the attack appears to suggest a terrorist plot. Metro-North services have been suspended from Grand Central Station.
A utility official told CNN that there had been a report of a gas leak shortly behind Wednesday morning's explosion, and a resident has reported smelling gas just after 9 a.m. ET.
Image: ABC 7