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Thousands evacuated after CFE substation explodes

Mexico City, Mexico — More than 3,000 people were evacuated from their homes Thursday night after a CFE substation exploded and caught fire.

The massive ball of flames could be seen for kilometers as the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) substation in the Santa Martha Acatitla Urban Zone neighborhood burned out of control. The emergency evacuation involved more than 3,000 people from nearby properties.

Authorities responded to the Thursday night call that came from area residents who reported hearing an explosion then seeing the sudden burst of flames. Emergency services, including more than 20 firefighters, arrived at the scene to battle flames. It took two hours before the fire was deemed under control.

Dozens of residents scrambled to battle flames with hoses and buckets of water, but to no avail. Several homes were destroyed in the blaze along with private vehicles.

Last night, Edgar Enrique Rosas, superintendent of the fire department of Mexico City, reported that the fire was officially under control and that there was no longer any risk of it spreading to nearby properties.

As of this morning, Secretaría de Gestión Integral de Riesgos reported the blaze as completely suffocated, noting authorities continue to wait for the substation to cool before beginning an official investigation.

Claudia Sheinbaum, government head said 10 people were treated on site by Rescue and Medical Emergency Squad paramedics for poisoning, while 3,000 were evicted from buildings adjacent to the fire.

Thousands have been left without electricity. The fire is believed to have started from overloaded cables, however, there is no official word yet on the cause.