Gas explosion in New Zealand’s Christchurch injures several people

In this image made from video, people bring their guns to exchange for money in Christchurch, New Zealand on July 13, 2019, months after a deadly terrorist attack on two mosques in the city. A suspected gas explosion in the city on Friday has caused jitters among still jittery residents. (TVNZ via AP)
Updated 19 July 2019

Gas explosion in New Zealand’s Christchurch injures several people

  • Christchurch remains on edge a terrorist attack on two mosques that killed 51 people and wounded dozens
  • Police were investigating the cause of Friday's explosion

WELLINGTON: New Zealand emergency services evacuated residents near what they said was a suspected gas explosion in the South Island city of Christchurch on Friday that left a house on fire and several people injured.
The city remains on edge four months after a lone gunman killed 51 people and wounded dozens in attacks on two Christchurch mosques in New Zealand’s worst peacetime mass shooting.
There was no indication that Friday’s blast had any wider security implications.
“Fire and Emergency New Zealand was called to a house on fire ... at about 10.15 a.m. after reports of a large gas explosion,” a spokeswoman for New Zealand’s fire service said.
Four fire engines, a specialist command unit and a fire investigator were at the scene, she said.
Police said in a statement initial reports suggested a number of people had been injured in the incident in the residential suburb of Northwood. Media reports said six people had been taken to hospital.
A house was on fire and police had closed roads and were carrying out evacuations following what they described as a “serious incident.”
A Christchurch hotel worker, who was not identified, told the New Zealand Herald newspaper that a sound like an explosion had shaken nearby buildings.
“It was more than an earthquake, you’d think a bomb had gone off,” the newspaper quoted the worker as saying.
Police did not identify the cause of the incident. A Fire and Emergency Services spokeswoman said a fire investigator was at the scene but did not yet have any official information about the cause.

 


Six killed as avalanche buries Indian patrol on disputed glacier

Updated 18 November 2019

Six killed as avalanche buries Indian patrol on disputed glacier

  • The disaster was the latest on the Siachen Glacier at more than 5,000 meters
  • Hundreds of troops from both sides have died in avalanches and from the fierce climate

SRINAGAR: An avalanche on Monday hit an Indian patrol in the world’s highest militarised zone in the Himalayas, killing four soldiers and two porters, an army spokesman said.
The disaster was the latest on the Siachen Glacier at more than 5,000 meters (16,500 feet) that is claimed by India and rival Pakistan.
Hundreds of troops from both sides have died in avalanches and from the fierce climate in the region over the past three decades.
An Indian military spokesman told AFP that the avalanche engulfed eight people in the patrol at the northern end of the glacier in the Karakoram mountain range.
Rescue teams managed to dig the patrol members out of the snow, and they were taken by helicopter to hospital.
“Despite best efforts, six casualties which includes four soldiers and two civilian porters succumbed to extreme hypothermia,” said the spokesman, Col. Rajesh Kalia.
Avalanches are common on the 700-square-kilometer (270-square-mile) glacier, where temperatures regularly fall to minus 60 degrees Celsius (-76 Fahrenheit).
In 2016, 10 Indian soldiers were buried and killed.
About 900 Indian soldiers alone have died on the glacier since 1984, when Indian forces took complete control of Siachen.
The glacier is located at the northern end of the Line of Control that divides Kashmir, which India and Pakistan have fought over since 1947.