“Poorly installed gas fire may have caused fatal gas explosion”

A poorly installed gas fire is believed to be a possible explanation for the disastrous gas explosion that claimed four lives on New Year’s Eve, when a block of flats collapsed in Turnhout (Antwerp Province). This is the preliminary finding of the judicial investigation.

An examining magistrate is currently carrying out an investigation into unpremeditated manslaughter and grievous bodily harm caused by an explosion in an inhabited block of flats resulting in deaths.

Detectives and a fire expert have meanwhile examined the scene.

At this time the investigation can’t rule out that a badly installed gas fire may be the cause of the explosion. As a result, prosecutors asked police to draw up a list of addresses where the same dangerous situation could potentially recur.  Eleven addresses in Antwerp, Deurne, Wilrijk, Kontich and Schaarbeek (Brussels) feature on the list. Last Monday local police carried out checks at all eleven sites in conjunction with fire services and utilities.

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