Child killed as 'suspicious' gas blast levels Oldham homes


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The Independent Online

A child was killed and a man seriously injured in an explosion that tore through terraced houses yesterday. Two-year-old Jamie Heaton died after what was thought to be a gas blast reduced three houses to rubble in Shaw in Oldham, Greater Manchester.

Police said that detectives investigating the explosion are treating the death as suspicious. A spokesman from Greater Manchester Police said they were aware of rumours about a domestic incident last night and appealed for information.

Rescuers were continuing to sift through the rubble last night to find one person still trapped in the debris.

Local people described smelling gas and hearing a massive explosion in Buckley Street at around 11.15am. The injured man was taken to Wythenshawe Hospital by helicopter.

Neighbour Alex Perkins said: "It's like a war zone... There's nothing there, just bricks on the floor.