A gas explosion injured 17 people in southwest Germany on Saturday morning, about 3000 were evacuated.

Two trucks caught fire on the site of a gas company in Harthausen, a small town about 110 kilometers south of Frankfurt. The flame spread to gas tanks which exploded when firefighters were trying to clear the trucks at about 5 o'clock in the morning (GMT 0300).

Neighbouring buildings were damaged, 17 people were injured, one of them seriously, according to local police. No death report has been received.

Blast could be heard kilometers away, and smoke above the explosion site was visible for miles. As a precaution, about 3000 residents living nearby were evacuated, some of them were received in a collection point established about five kilometers away.

According to local police, the situation was currently under control, but the cause of fire remained unclear.