Monday 06.07.2020
POLICE SAY IT WAS AN ACCIDENT

Explosion in Helsinki City Theater

One person was injured person and transferred to hospital.
A policeman stands outside the Helsinki City Theater where an explosion took place during technical maintenance. Photo: Emmi Korhonen/dpa.
A policeman stands outside the Helsinki City Theater where an explosion took place during technical maintenance. Photo: Emmi Korhonen/dpa.

An explosion occurred on Monday at the sprinkler center of the Helsinki City Theater, which left one person injured.

The Helsinki police reported about noon that there had been one "accidental explosion" in the facility. Several police, fire and rescue patrols were sent to the scene and one person needed to be transferred to hospital.

The technical director of the city theater, Antti Rehtijärvi, talked to newspaper Helsingin Sanomat and confirmed that the explosion took place in "the technical space" of the theater and that the injured is an employee of the maintenance company.

The theater staff was not injured.

Police soon reported that the explosion would have occurred in the sprinkler room.

“There has been maintenance going on there,” Rehtijärvi confirmed.

Later in the evening, after inspecting the entire building, police said in a press release that they found nothing to indicate that the explosion was intentional.

"Based on current information, it is suspected that the explosion was caused by a gas formed from dry zinc tubes into a small space. We will continue to investigate," says Jukkapekka Risu , senior detective superintendent at the Helsinki Police Department.

Helsinki_City_Theater-Police-Finland-by-dpaA police officer, outside the theater where the explosion occurred. Photo: Olivia Ranta/dpa.

Limited damage

The explosion did not cause extensive material damage. However, police isolated the area around the theater and carried out technical and tactical investigations.

"This is an accident at work. The man injured in the blast was taken to hospital. He was doing maintenance work in the sprinkler room when the explosion took place," superintendent Risu added.

The sprinkler center where the explosion occurred is an enclosed concrete space underground. The material damage was limited to the stairwell where the sprinkler center is located.

At the time of the explosion there were around 100 people inside the facility.

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