Homes damaged in huge 'gas' blast

Western Telegraph: Police and fire services are at the scene of a large suspected gas explosion in Oldham Police and fire services are at the scene of a large suspected gas explosion in Oldham

A number of homes have been damaged in a large suspected gas explosion, police have said.

Emergency services are at the scene which centres on a house near Buckley Street and Duchess Street in the Shaw area of Oldham.

Greater Manchester Police said at this stage there are no confirmed details on casualties or the number of homes damaged.

Steve McGuirk, Chief Fire Officer for Greater Manchester, said in a tweet: "Just had an update on the incident in Oldham - very serious, we have crews and search and rescue teams on scene working hard."

A statement on the Greater Manchester Police website said: "Shortly after 11.15am today, police were called to Shaw following a report that homes had been seriously damaged in a large explosion. Police, fire and ambulance services are at the scene and a cordon is being put in place."

In a statement, the fire service said: "One man has been rescued following a possible gas explosion in Shaw in Oldham. The control room has received numerous calls from members of the public and the initial information from the public is that it involves a number of terraced properties in Duchess Street with possibly people trapped."

A spokeswoman for the North West Ambulance Service said one patient had been taken to Wythenshawe Hospital with 80% burns.

She added: "At 11.13am today we received a call to reports of an explosion on Buckley Street in Oldham. We have sent a number of ambulances, including our Hazardous Area Response Team (Hart) to the scene."

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