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Blast blows walls off apartment, injuring 8

EIGHT people were injured in a blast in a residential building following a suspected domestic dispute in Shanghai's Qingpu District last night.

The blast occurred on the fourth floor of the residential building about 6:20pm and rocked the whole community on Chengzhong Road E.

Witnesses said a couple living in the building caused the blast during a fight which affected neighbors.

The building was extensively damaged as the outside walls of the fourth floor were blown away, exposing the interior. Slabs of the fifth floor fell into the fourth floor and passers-by were hit by blown-out house contents.

Windows of neighboring buildings were smashed by the impact of the explosion.

Firefighters rushed to the site to rescue people from the endangered building.

The injured were taken to Qingpu District Central Hospital and one person suffering severe burns was rushed to Ruijin Hospital.

Most people were having dinner when they heard the huge explosion and felt the building swaying. They thought it might have been an earthquake and fled their apartments.

"The sound was horrible," a Netizen, lihuiqiong, living near the site said in a district forum. "I thought it was thunder."

"Everyone was talking about the explosion. Fire trucks came and the residential area looked just like those in the Sichuan earthquake."

A middle-aged couple living on the fourth floor are believed to have ignited explosive materials during a fight, witnesses said.

Water, gas and electricity supplies were cut off and safety barricades were set up to cordon off the site.

An investigation into the cause of the blast is ongoing, including whether gas or other explosive was used.


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