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A high pressure heating pipeline running below a pavement ruptured when the pavement collapsed following violent storms. Steam leak occurred and the pipeline exploded an hour later during operations being carried out by the staff of the heating company along with firemen and policemen. The explosion resulted in a 10m x 4m crater, projected several people, smashed glass panes and damaged vehicles in the proximity. Two firemen were seriously injured of whom one died shortly after. 21 other people also sustained injuries. Rescue services arrived in great numbers (150 firemen from 19 fire stations, dog squads, etc.). A danger area was demarcated and a neighbouring day-care centre was evacuated.