The Seychelles declared a state of emergency on Thursday after a blast at an explosives store, following destructive floods from the recent heavy rains in the East African nation.
The explosion, which took place in an industrial area called Providence on Mahé Island off the eastern coast of Africa in the Indian Ocean, “has caused massive damage,” the president’s office said in a statement. Most of the nation’s residents live on Mahé Island.
The Civil Construction Company, where the office said the blast happened, has supplied crusher and quarry products to the construction industry since 1998, according to the company’s website.
Following the explosion, Seychelles authorities closed all schools and asked residents to stay at home, except for emergency and essential workers.
The Seychelles, which comprises about 115 tropical islands, is home to about 100,000 people.
The authorities in the Seychelles, a popular tourist destination, said that the Seychelles International Airport and ferry services between islands remained in operation.
This is a developing story.