UPDATED: 2 NYC Buildings Collapse, 2 Dead, Others Missing

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

UPDATE 11:40AM NEW YORK (AP) -- New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio says people are still missing after an explosion leveled two apartment buildings, killing two people and injuring 18 others.

De Blasio says: "There are a number of missing individuals." He suggests some may have fled to safety and says the city is expending every effort to locate the people who are still unaccounted for.

The mayor urged worried relatives to call 311. A hotline was being set up.

The mayor says Con Edison is shutting down all gas mains going into the building.

He says a gas leak was reported to the utility 15 minutes before the explosion. The explosion occurred before the Con Edison team arrived.


An explosion has leveled two New York City apartment buildings, killing one person and injuring 15 others. A utility company says a resident in a nearby building reported smelling gas shortly before the explosion.

The New York Police Department says one person died in the East Harlem blast. No other information is available.

Con Edison spokesman Bob McGee says a resident from a building adjacent to the two that collapsed reported that he smelled gas inside his apartment, but thought the odor could be coming from outside.

McGee says the utility dispatched two crews just after 9:15 a.m., but they arrived just after the explosion. He says the street is served by an eight-inch low-pressure gas main. He would not speculate on whether a gas leak caused the explosion.


An explosion has leveled a New York City apartment building, killing one person and injuring 15 others.

The New York Police Department says one person died. No other information is available.

Residents heard a large explosion near Park Avenue and 116th Street in East Harlem around 9 a.m. Wednesday. One five-story building was reduced to rubble, and images from the scene showed a second building also was badly damaged.

TV news footage shows billowing smoke and firefighters dousing the site from ladder trucks. Bricks also cover parked vehicles.

Sidewalks for blocks around are littered with broken glass from shattered storefront and apartment windows.

The site is next to Metro-North commuter railroad tracks. Train service is halted to and from Grand Central Terminal.


-- A New York City apartment building has exploded in huge flames and billowing black smoke, leading to the collapse of at least one building and 16 injuries.

The New York City fire department says 15 people were treated for minor injuries at the scene. Another person with serious trauma was transported to Harlem Hospital.

Residents heard a large explosion near Park Avenue and 116th Street in East Harlem around 9 a.m. Wednesday. One five-story building was reduced to rubble, and a second building also is heavily damaged.

Sidewalks for blocks around are littered with broken glass from shattered storefront and apartment windows. Witnesses say the blast was so powerful it knocked groceries off the shelves of nearby stores.

The site is next to Metro-North commuter railroad tracks. Train service is halted to and from Grand Central Terminal.


-- The New York City fire department says an East Harlem apartment building has exploded and collapsed, leading to 11 minor injuries.

WABC says residents heard a large explosion in an apartment building near Park Avenue and 116th Street around 9 a.m. Wednesday. The building was five stories and appeared to be reduced to rubble.

TV news footage shows billowing smoke and firefighters dousing the site from ladder trucks. Bricks also cover parked vehicles.

The site is adjacent to Metro-North commuter railroad tracks, not far from the northeastern tip of Central Park. Metro-North says it has halted service to and from Grand Central Terminal.


-- The New York City fire department is on the scene of a possible explosion and building collapse in East Harlem.

There were no immediate reports of injuries. TV news footage shows smoke billowing from the area and firefighters dousing the site from ladder trucks.

WABC says residents reported hearing a large explosion in an apartment building around 9 a.m. Wednesday.

The FDNY says the reports came in from around Park Avenue between 114th and 117th streets. The site is near Metro-North commuter railroad tracks, off the northeastern tip of Central Park.

Images from the scene also showed rubble partially covering a parked vehicle.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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