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“I saw all the sparks through the window,” Explosion outside gas station forces evacuations, shuts down roads

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OKLAHOMA CITY - An explosion Thursday in northwest Oklahoma City shut down roads and forced evacuations.

Police said someone set off an explosive next to a Shell gas station at 16th and Portland.

Two brothers, both employees at the gas station, were rattled after a loud boom came from the dumpster around 4 p.m.

“I saw all the sparks through the window,” said Sayed Ali.

“I saw really big smoke around the dumpster. Everybody heard it. It was about 50 people that gathered around,” said Mahmood Hassan.

Police and fire crews rushed to the scene and shut down Portland Avenue.

People who live and work in the area were told to evacuate.

Investigators were concerned about another possible explosive device around all the fuel there.

“They kept telling us to move farther and farther away,” Ali said.

The explosion comes just days after another frightening event happened at the store.

“Saturday, a car drove through the store. It was like a similar situation. I was like ‘Oh no, another car going through the store, and it was actually louder than that,’” Ali said.

Thankfully, no one was hurt in either situation.

There were some initial reports of someone leaving the scene this afternoon shortly after the explosion, but police could not confirm that or a suspect description.

Anyone with information on this crime should call Oklahoma City police.