A powerful chain reaction blast tore through one of Mexico most popular fireworks markets yesterday, killing at least 29 people and injuring 72 more, including a number of children.
A video of the explosion shows a massive plume of smoke emerging from the San Pablito market in Tultepec, about 25 miles from the centre of Mexico City, and fireballs leaping from stall to stall. CNN reports that it was packed with locals buying fireworks for the Christmas holidays.
"13 children suffered burns to more than 90 per cent of their bodies and were being sent to the US city of Galveston in Texas for treatment," Reuters says.
Witness Crescencia Francisco Garcia said: "Everything was catching fire. Everything was exploding. The stones were flying, pieces of brick — everything was flying."
It is not yet known what caused the blast, but the Chicago Tribune reports it is the third major incident at the site since 2005.
"A similar fire engulfed the San Pablito Market in 2005, touching off a chain of explosions that leveled hundreds of stalls just ahead of Mexico's Independence Day," it says, adding that the following year, another fire "destroyed hundreds of stands".