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Woman Killed and 19 Children Injured in Gas Explosion at School

August 22, 1996

EMMELOORD, Netherlands (AP) _ Leaking gas exploded Thursday at a primary school in the northern Netherlands, killing an adult employee and wounding 19 children.

The blast was likely caused by workmen repairing the school’s water heater, police spokesman Evert Onink said in a telephone interview.

``It looks like a bomb went off here,″ Onink said. ``The front and one side of the building were blown out while the children were sitting in their classrooms.″

About 40 people were in the Flevo School in this town 43 miles northeast of Amsterdam when the blast ripped through the one-story building at 11:30 a.m.

The wounded children, aged between five and 12 years, were taken to hospitals. Their injuries were not thought to be life-threatening, Onink said.

The woman killed was an administrative worker, he said.

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