Police believe gas from deodorizer spray cans may have sparked Sapporo blast that injured 42
Japan Times -- Dec 18
Police believe an explosion at a Sapporo building that left 42 people injured on Sunday was caused by gas leaking from more than 100 deodorizer spray cans, intended for disposal, at a real estate agency.

The wooden building, which housed the agency along with a Japanese-style pub and an adjacent clinic, collapsed in the blast, local authorities said.

The explosion occurred at around 8:30 p.m. in Toyohira Ward, resulting in a fire that was extinguished at 2:10 a.m. An employee of the real estate agency told police about the disposal of the spray cans. It is suspected that gas from the cans ignited when a water heater was switched on.

Among the 42 victims, a male employee of the real estate agency in his 30s was seriously injured. That office was the most severely damaged. The injured included 19 men and 23 women, aged from 1 to their 60s, according to the police.

The local fire department said the explosion damaged a total of 28 buildings, including one about 100 meters away from the site, and 24 vehicles.

Numerous customers who were dining on the pub’s upper floor said they smelled gas at the time of the explosion.

Windows of condominiums and restaurants near the site, located close to a subway station in the Hokkaido capital, were shattered, and wood debris was scattered dozens of meters away. Many people who felt the blast said they thought it was an earthquake.

札幌市の爆発事故で、ガス爆発が起きたとみられる不動産仲介会社の関係者が「スプレー缶120本のガス抜き作業をしていた」と話していることが分かりました。 16日夜、札幌市豊平区で2階建ての建物が爆発で倒壊するなどしました。
News sources: Japan Times, ANNnewsCH
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