UPDATE: Six hurt in major gas explosion on Blackpool street

Two people were trapped after a large gas explosion caused devastation to flats and guest house on a Blackpool Street.

Saturday, 23rd September 2017, 7:55 pm
Updated Wednesday, 27th September 2017, 11:47 am
The scene on Charles Street where police said there has been a 'large gas explosion'

Residents in nearby streets were evacuated after the major incident on Charles Street shortly before 6pm on Saturday.

Six people were hurt but none of them seriously, police said, and the man and woman trapped had since been freed by emergency services.

Residents are being advised to avoid the area.

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Force incident manager, Insp Kevin Otter, of Lancashire Police, said it was 'very lucky' nobody had been killed in the blast.

He said: "There were no fatalities. Six people have injuries but no major issues, fortunately so.

"A female was trapped at one point and a male too.

"The female was released reasonably quickly. The male took a little bit longer but he was talking to us throughout."

Investigations are underway into the source of the gas explosion, thought to have been inside the property.

In a statement posted online, Blackpool Police said: "A safety cordon has been put in place and nearby residents on Charles Street and Milbourne Street have been evacuated.

"Road closures have been put in place on nearby Cookson Street and Grosvenor Street and people are being advised to avoid the area."

The force said anyone displaced by the evacuation order could go to either the Salvation Army Citadel on Raikes Parade or St John's Church, on Church Street.

Lancashire Fire and Rescue said in a statement shortly after the blast: "We've several fire engines and specialist appliances such as urban search and rescue team dealing with a suspected gas explosion in Blackpool.

"We were called just before 6pm to Charles Street. We're aware of people who have been injured, the nature of these injuries are not yet known."

A resident living nearby described seeing 'approximately six police vans, numerous police cars, two fire engines and ambulances and paramedic cars'.