Bangkok: WW II bomb kills seven

Seven people have died in an explosion at a shop on Lat Pla Khao Soi 72 in Bang Khen.

Five died on the spot in the explosion at a junk recycling shop about 12.50pm. The blast demolished the building and started a large fire. Body parts were found as far as 200 metres from the scene.

Twenty more people were reported injured by the Erawan medical centre.

The blast was caused by a 500-pound World War II (227kg) bomb, the reports said.

Before the explosion, a construction worker at a site near the shop found a heavy piece of iron during piling work.

He did not know what it was so he sold it to the junk shop.

An employee at the shop also did not know it was a bomb. He therefore tried to cut it open with a gas torch, sparking the explosion.

The bomb could have come in with the soil used to fill the site before construction began.

Police said the explosion left a crater four metres wide and three metres deep where the shop once stood.

Several nearby houses were also damaged by the blast, they said.