An 18-story building partially collapsed after an explosion in the historic center of Rio de Janeiro Wednesday, state media reported.
Civil defense authorities told Agencia Brasil that there were injuries, but they did not provide details.
"I started to hear a crackling. I thought they were gunshots. When I looked up, I saw the top floors falling," maintenance worker Julio Cesar de Oliveria Brandao told CNN affiliate TV Record.
There was a fire after the blast, Agencia Brasil said. Police and fire officials were isolating the area and searching for victims, the news agency reported.
Cars parked on the street were covered in dust, and there was a strong smell of gas in the area, fire officials said, according to the news agency. The building's lobby contained a bank branch and a bakery, Agencia Brasil said.FULL STORY