Birmingham & Black Country

'Gas explosion' blows roof off Birmingham house

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Media captionA neighbour told the BBC she saw a man run out from the wreckage screaming.

A suspected gas explosion has blown the roof off a house while a man and woman were inside.

The blast at a two-storey house in Wiggin Street, Edgbaston, Birmingham happened at about 12:20 BST.

A neighbour told the BBC she saw a man run out from the wreckage screaming.

A man, thought to be in his late 30s, made his own way to City Hospital but his burns were so severe he was taken to the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, West Midlands Ambulance Service said.

More updates on the blast and news from Birmingham.

A woman was checked at the scene and was uninjured.

Image copyright West Midlands Fire Service
Image caption Four fire engines and the gas board are at the scene in Wiggin Street
Image copyright West Midlands Fire Service
Image caption Two other properties were affected by the explosion - a couple have returned to one house and a woman to another
Image copyright West Midlands Fire Service
Image caption Handsworth fire crews tweeted this picture of the back of the property where the roof collapsed

Next door neighbour Tracy Clayton was at home with her husband Bilal Azhar when they felt a "huge explosion".

"The neighbour next door to us whose house was blown up, he ran out screaming," she said.

"I think he was on fire or hurt."

Image copyright West Midlands Fire Service
Image caption The walls at the back of the property are bowing after the explosion

She added: "Everything fell on top of us. The roof gave in. There was just smoke everywhere, bricks flying.

"I switched my electric off and thought about my cat and did not know where it was but she was unharmed thank God."

Image caption Wiggin Street has been closed off in both directions

West Midlands Police said a small number of homes had been evacuated as a precaution.

"Investigations at the scene are likely to be suspended once it gets dark, then continue tomorrow," said West Midlands Fire Service.

Image caption Fire fighters are using an aerial platform to tackle the fire
Image copyright West Midlands Fire Service
Image caption An ambulance, the hazardous area response team, the Midlands Air Ambulance and two rapid response vehicles are at the scene

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