A loud explosion has been heard in the Nigerian city of Ibadan and the surrounding area, destroying several buildings in Bodija and causing a number of casualties, witnesses say. The cause of the blast is not yet clear.
The accident happened just before 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday when what sounded like a large explosion was heard in and near the city. Thousands of residents reported hearing and feeling it on social media.
Witnesses told BNO News that multiple buildings were damaged in the area near Adeyi Avenue, Bodija. Windows were blown out at homes, a hotel and a restaurant and a portion of the ceiling collapsed at the Ace Mall.
Two witnesses said they saw several people with injuries from broken glass and a third witness said people were injured in a residential area. He said others were possibly still trapped under rubble.
“Houses are down. Lots of houses are down here and people are under the rubble,” one witness said in a video sent to BNO News. It was recorded in a residential area near Ace Mall.
According to the Punch newspaper, at least 10 bodies were recovered from the rubble and taken away in ambulances.
Officials are yet to comment on the cause of the explosion and rumors on social media about an incident at a nearby gas station could not be immediately confirmed. Seismologists said no earthquakes were recorded.
“Residents are urged to remain calm as security agencies are investigating this to determine the source and cause of the incident,” the Oyo State Government said in a statement. “Relevant agencies are carrying out search and rescue operations.”
The explosion was also heard in Apete, Ojoo, UI, Moniya, Awotan, Alaro/Poly Ibadan, and Jeje, among other areas. Many residents said they felt their house shake and some said their windows were damaged.
Damage at the Ace Mall
Someone’s Apartment After the Wierd Sound in Ibadan a while ago pic.twitter.com/wpsNh3g54y— Bọ̀dá AbímbólÁdèdàpo (@3plebim) January 16, 2024