MOROCCO – First the flames, then a huge explosion. The impressive explosion of a gas depot around 7:30 p.m. this Thursday, December 22 in the port city of Mohammedia, on the west coast of Morocco, left part of the city without electricity and its citizens in complete incomprehension. There would be no casualties at this time.
Big explosion some 20 minutes ago in propane gas stocks at the port of Mohammedia Uncontrolled fire which… https://t.co/OS5o5Hl0uh
— Hamza Hachlaf (@M_Hamza_Hachlaf)
On social networks, many videos of residents frightened by the power of the flames and the blast of the explosion have multiplied in recent hours. The conflagration of a gas depot by the sea is at the origin of this wind of panic, according to the site Medias24 and the TV channel 2m. Electricity was cut in part of the city after power lines were hit by the fires. A press release from the local authorities is expected soon.
A situation “under control”, according to the authorities
While the exact cause of the disaster remains to be determined, several residents reported smelling a very strong smell of gas in the minutes preceding the explosion. Some videos also show wisps of whitish gas suddenly igniting. Usually odorless, the gas used in the depot has been modified so that it can be smelled in the event of a leak, according to local media.
State of shock! Impressive explosion in Mohamedia. Ya rabbi that the inhabitants are safe and sound… https://t.co/M07bCGFmul
— Menjesbi 🎗️ (@Menjesbi)
According to local authorities to Medias24, the situation “was completely under control” by civil protection. ‘No casualties’ would not be to be deplored, specifies this same source. According to several eyewitnesses, the emergency services were still fighting the flames in the early evening, in order to prevent their spread.
Explosion in Mohammedia at the port… ALLAH Y HFAD LJAMI3 https://t.co/Co5jnMKaGs
— SOCCER212 (@SCCR_212)
The “houses surrounding the crash site were evacuated”said the television channel 2m. This is also the case for the port, the park and the fish market. Several security barriers follow one another around the disaster area, says Medias24. Police, auxiliary forces and agents of authority are mobilized there to keep the population away.
See also on Le HuffPost :