October 30, 2015 / 10:33 PM / 4 years ago

Romanian nightclub explosion leaves 26 dead, dozens injured

Emergency services work outside a nightclub in Bucharest, Romania October 31, 2015. REUTERS/Inquam Photos

BUCHAREST (Reuters) - At least 26 people died and 88 were injured in an explosion and fire in a Bucharest, Romania, nightclub where hundreds of people had gathered late on Friday, government officials said, in one of the capital’s worst incidents in decades.

The death toll may still climb at the club, which hosted a rock concert attended by up to 400, Deputy Interior Minister Raed Arafat said.

One witness said there were fireworks inside the club. A pillar and the club’s ceiling caught fire and then there was an explosion and heavy smoke.

TV footage showed police officers and paramedics trying to resuscitate young people lying on the pavement while sirens wailed with more ambulances deployed to the scene.

“There was a stampede of people running out of the (Colectiv) club,” a man who escaped without shoes told Reuters.

Deputy Prime Minister Gabriel Oprea said an investigation into the causes of the incident was already underway.

Reporting by Radu Marinas; Editing by Lisa Shumaker

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