Paris bakery blast death toll rises

The death toll from a suspected gas explosion in central Paris has risen to four after rescue workers found the body of a woman in the rubble.

Two firefighters and a Spanish tourist were also killed in Saturday’s blast at a bakery near a popular area.

Dozens more people were injured in the blast, which also caused damage in nearby streets.

The cause was thought to be accidental, though other explanations have not been excluded, the Paris prosecutor said.

Some 30 firefighters were involved in the search for a woman who had been declared missing, reports say.

The body found on Sunday was in the process of being identified, a spokesman for the Paris fire service said.

Search efforts would continue, he said, although rescue workers were no longer looking for anyone reported missing as such, he said.

The latest casualty figures were nine people seriously injured, including one firefighter, and another 45 people with lighter injuries, including six firefighters, suffering from hearing or psychological difficulties, he added.

Work was going on to reinforce the buildings hit by the blast, and residents “would have to wait a long time” before being allowed to return home, he added.

The blast happened at the Hubert bakery at 6, rue de Trévise.

A gas leak had been reported in the building and firefighters had arrived to deal with it when the explosion occurred.

Around 150 people have been housed in temporary accommodation because of damage to nearby buildings.

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