Fireball near Bologna airport after road crash explosion

Tanker explodes on the road near Bologna airport

An explosion killed at least two people and injured dozens more near the Italian city of Bologna in an incident that caused a bridge to partially collapse.

Police closed off a number of roads in Borgo Panigale, an area on the city's outskirts, causing serious delays to those travelling to the nearby airport, which remained open. No further details were immediately available. The explosion sent flames soaring into the air.

Bologna is in northern Italy, and is located some 374 kilometres from Rome, the capital.

Italian media has reported that numerous injured were hit by debris and shattered glass following the explosion.

"My auto is still under the flyover, I am waiting to see if and when I can get it back", Marco Rosadini, from Arezzo, Italy, told Italian news agency ANSA.

Many people had evacuated the area, due to the thick black smoke, but also while firefighters checked to see if buildings where windows had been blown out were safe to enter.

Fire in Bologna
Fire raging on the motorway outside Bologna

In a tweet, Bologna Airport said it wasn't affected by the explosion.

They wrote: "tanker explosion: extinguished the flames, in progress the cooling operations".

A lorry carrying cars reportedly collided with a tanker containing flammable materials.

According to the initial reports, the blast was triggered by a road accident.

Dramatic footage from the scene taken by a motorist driving towards the explosion shows a significant blast before he reverses away from the scene.

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