The Belgian Turnhout will never forget the last day of 2021. That morning, there was a gas explosion that not only caused havoc, but also killed four people. The cause of the explosion is still unclear at the moment, but the Public Prosecution Office has now announced that the installation error may be due to a gas fire.
Residents of Boeren Krijglaan in Turnhout imagine New Year’s Eve differently. At about 8.15 a.m., a particularly violent rumble was stunned by the neighborhood that could be heard outside Turnhout. A short time later, it turned out that there had been a gas explosion in an apartment building erected by a social housing company.
According to some witnesses, shrapnel flew everywhere. Cars parked more than 100 yards from the wreck were damaged. “My neighbors’ apartments on the left were completely swept away,” said one of the locals.
It was already found that four floors of the building had completely collapsed. The facade has been blown away and you can see from the street side right through the building. A few skewed coat racks remained in place, but most of the furniture, rubble, and glass flew in all directions. Hardly anything seems to have survived from an average apartment building. A neighbor previously said he noticed a smell of gas, but did not report it.
Belgian police have compiled a list of addresses where a dangerous case may also arise. This pertains to 11 venues in Antwerp, Dorn, Willerik, Kuntsch and Schaerbeek, where inspections were also carried out on Monday night.
The cause of the explosion remains unclear and needs thorough investigation. The Public Prosecution appointed a fire expert to investigate the situation. It is now said that a gas fire installation error may have caused the explosion and that there may be similar problems in several locations.
11 other places were checked
“Since it cannot be excluded, on the basis of the data in the current state of the judicial investigation, that the explosion may have been the result of a technical problem in the external installation of the gas fire and in order to rule out any danger, action is immediately taken,” it appears.
On behalf of the Belgian public prosecutor, the police have compiled a list of addresses where a similarly serious case may appear. It concerns 11 locations in Antwerp, Dorn, Willerik, Könch and Schaerbeek, where inspections were carried out on the spot on Monday night by local police districts in cooperation with the fire services and utility companies.”
The judicial investigation will continue by the Criminal Investigation Department of BZ Reggio Turnhout, led by the investigating judge. Four people were killed in the blast. It is about a couple of 60 years and 70 years and a couple of 72 and 79 years. An online mourning record of the victims was opened and a minute’s silence was set up last Friday.
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