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Five killed in Bulgarian gas train blast

At least five people were killed on Saturday and 27 were injured when a freight train transporting gas derailed and exploded in the northeastern Bulgarian village of Hitrino, officials said.

“Five victims have been confirmed dead so far and 27 injured,” the interior ministry said in a statement.

The train was carrying more than 20 tankers of propylene gas and propane butane when it derailed while entering the village’s rail station.

The last two tankers hit a power line and exploded and seven tankers full of propylene went off the tracks, local police spokeswoman Assia Yordannova said. The blast occurred at 5:37 AM (local time) at the village, located about 100 kilometres from Varna, Bulgaria’s main port on the Black Sea.

The interior ministry said there were 200 firefighters and rescuers at the scene. More than 50 houses were damaged and 40 families evacuated.

“Four victims have been identified but we fear there will be more. Twenty-five people were injured,” civil defence chief Nikolay Nikolov said.

A hospital in the nearby town of Shumen said an 18-year- old man had died from his injuries, while three people with life-threatening burns have been transported to a hospital in the city of Varna, Bulgaria’s largest port on the Black Sea.
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