AN EXPLOSION ripped through a warehouse full of fireworks in Nigeria’s largest city yesterday, sparking a fire that threatened surrounding blocks.
The blast, at around 9am in the Jankara area of Lagos Island, echoed miles away and shook windows.
It was unclear if anyone was inside the building at the time of the explosion.
“While security agencies [will] investigate and determine the cause of the explosion and fire outbreaks, casualty figures are yet to be determined,” said Yushau Shuaib, a spokesman for Nigeria’s National Emergency Management Agency.
“Some residents who were injured while attempting to assist in putting out the fire have been taken to hospital for treatment.”
Thousands filled the streets surrounding the buildings after the blast. Others ran as fireworks continued to explode inside.
Fire crews arrived at the scene with two trucks and locals also ran hoses from the trucks to nearby buildings to try and beat back the flames.
Several police officers and security officials found large, mortar-like fireworks in the building, the kind wired to explode as part of a large arrangement put on by professionals.
Local government officials have tried to ban fireworks this year, in part due to safety concerns.