UPDATED BY REUTERS:
- No injuries reported at Sagami depot, 25 miles southwest of Tokyo.
- Cause unknown but army spokesman says no hazardous materials involved.
The Pentagon confirmed on Sunday that an explosion had occurred at a US military base in Japan. No injuries were reported.
Video posted to YouTube (below) appeared to show the explosion. A Department of Defense spokesman later said the blast happened just after midnight local time “at a building on a US army post, the Sagami Depot in the city of Sagamihara … about 25 miles southwest of Tokyo”.
In the statement emailed to the Guardian, navy commander Bill Urban added: “There are no reports of injury, and base firefighters and first responders are currently fighting the resulting fire to prevent its spread to nearby buildings.”
The local fire department said it received a call just after midnight of an explosion at a US army depot where it said “dangerous material” was stored, and sent firefighters.
It added that the fire had subsided and there was no danger of it spreading. The cause of the fire was not immediately known, the fire department said.
A US army spokesman subsequently told Reuters the building where the explosion occurred didn’t store any hazardous material.
AS REPORTED BY REUTERS:
A series of explosions erupted early Monday morning, likely at Sagami General Depot, a US army outpost in Kanagawa Prefecture, on the outskirts of Tokyo.
The Pentagon has said it first heard of the explosion from news media, and is investigating.
“We’re aware of the report, but we don’t have confirmation that the explosion occurred on the base,” Pentagon spokesman, US Navy Commander Bill Urban, told reporters.
The fire department of the city of Sagamihara said the blasts rang out shortly before 1:00am local time, national broadcaster NHK reported.
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