World News – The death toll in the explosion at the headquarters of Mexico’s oil giant Pemex rose to 25 late Thursday, the interior minister said.
“We have up to now 25 people dead — 17 women and eight men,” Interior Minister Miguel Angel Osorio Chong told a news conference, adding that 101 people were injured.
A huge explosion rocked the Mexico City headquarters of state-owned oil giant Pemex on Thursday, killing at least 25 people, injuring 100 more and leaving rescuers scrambling to find survivors.
Smoke billowed skyward as people fled the 54-floor skyscraper with some of those hurt in the blast being carried out on stretchers and office chairs, as witnesses recalled how a huge rumble shook the floor like an earthquake. Windows broke on several lower floors, scattering debris, with the company saying the cause of the deadly incident was under investigation and declaring that any reports on the origin of the blast amounted to speculation.
The blast rocked the area at around 4:00 pm (2200 GMT), causing 3,500 people to rush out of the building, according to local media. Witnesses said the roof joining the tower and an annex collapsed. And as night fell, floodlights shined on the rubble and two cranes were brought to help rescuers find survivors.
Almost six hours after the blast, President Enrique Pena Nieto said on Twitter that “one more person was rescued alive in the rubble.” “I don’t have any conclusive report on the cause, which is why I insist against any speculation,” Pena Nieto told reporters after visiting the site.
A spokesman for the civil protection agency said there was an apparent “accumulation of gas” in an electrical supply room, but the exact cause of the blast has yet to be confirmed.
A Red Cross spokesman, Fernando Surinaga, said the death toll had “risen to at least 15,” while the government said around 100 people were injured. Emergency workers with rescue dogs, helicopters and several ambulances were at the scene in the capital, a city that is equipped to handle earthquakes. Pemex said on Twitter that the explosion hit the ground floor and mezzanine of the tower’s annex. Agencies