Little is known about how an East Village building exploded and erupted in flames Thursday afternoon.

An unknown number of people have been injured in New York City after an East Village building exploded and erupted in flames Thursday afternoon.

What we know

The fire is at 125 Second Avenue, a mixed-use building with a deli and Pommes Frites, a well-loved Belgian fry restaurant, on the bottom floor. Firefighters blocked the scene off around 3:30, according to news reports, and said they thought there might be 30 injuries, though reliable information remains sparse.The New York Daily News reports that at least one person was rushed to the hospital in critical condition.

Pictures on social media showed charred debris and aggressive flames licking out of windows up to the top of the five-floor building and an adjoining building. According to some reports, people may be trapped inside.

What caused the fire?

It's too soon to know what happened, but witnesses reported hearing an explosion, leading to immediate speculation that a gas leak might be to blame. In March 2014, a gas leak in East Harlem destroyed two buildings and killed eight people. Experts warn that deteriorating and ill-maintained gas lines pose a lethal threat.

This post originally appeared on The Atlantic.

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