School and homes evacuated after van carrying oxygen tanks explodes in Milan

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A van that was carrying oxygen tanks to a medical facility has exploded in the centre of of Milan, prompting the evacuation of a school and apartment buildings.

The driver suffered minor injuries.

Images on Sky TG24 showed a plume of dark smoke rising from a narrow street near Porta Romana, where flames scorched nearby cars and motorcycles and broke windows in adjacent buildings, including the school.

Italy Explosion
Firefighters tackle a fire in a residential building after the van exploded (Luca Bruno/AP)

The driver suffered an injury to his hand when he tried to douse the flames, firefighter Carlo Cardinali told reporters at the scene.

He was treated at the scene and taken to hospital.

It was not immediately known what sparked the explosion but Mr Cardinali said the rapid spread of the flames was due to the quantity of explosive material on board.

About 200-300 children at an elementary, middle school and day care complex were evacuated without incident, Milan Mayor Giuseppe Sala told Sky TG24.

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