After an explosion in Madrid that shook the area, at least three people were killed and 11 left injured.
The explosion resulted in the partial collapse of the building belonging to the Catholic Church, the mayor of the city said.
Electrician David Santos Muñoz, 35, a father of four, was the first victim to be identified.
The Archdiocese of Madrid declared that he had “come to lend a hand” and announced that a priest was in critical condition as well.
According to Mayor Jose Luis Martinez-Almeida, initial reports suggested a gas leak that possibly triggered the explosion in Calle de Toledo, a street leading out of the city center.
Emergency services confirmed that 11 people, including one in a critical condition who was taken to hospital, were also injured.
The mayor said a body was found under the debris, but the corpse still needs to be retrieved by firefighters.
He added: “The most likely hypothesis is a gas leak, there was a person working on the boiler.”
Debris was left strewn across the road and on Wednesday, just before 3 pm local time, cars were smashed from the explosion.
Smoke billowed out of the collapsing building and elderly people were rescued from a nearby nursing home by emergency personnel.
One church volunteer was missing, a church official said.
The BBC recorded that about 60 individuals were evacuated from a care home next door.
The top five floors were completely gone, the walls blown out, while the bottom two floors were still relatively intact, but charred from the flames in places.
A loud explosion was reportedly heard by witnesses before a plume of smoke was seen near the Puerta de Toledo town.
The building was a complex that provided priests with residential training and gave homeless people meals, a neighbor said.
Explosion videos soon surfaced online and showed a street totally coated in ash.
In the video, people could also be heard screaming and crying, with the windscreens of cars completely smashed on the street.
The recording then pans to the left and from the structure a massive building that seems to have been totally gutted and smoke can be seen coming.
In the center of the area, emergency services rushed to the scene.
The Spanish authorities said in a statement: “Ongoing incident in the Puerto de Toledo area.”
“Please avoid the area and clear the way for emergency resources.”
A nearby building is understood to have housed a nursing home – but this has not been officially confirmed by authorities.
However, a large number of elderly women can be seen in tears vacating the area in one video shared on Twitter.
Witnesses reported that the building had lost its roof and five of its seven floors, even though the authorities did not confirm this.
Devastating photographs surfacing on social media show the belongings of people inside the house, including a clothing rack and a TV.
The windows of the building parallel to 98 Toledo Street were blown off across the lane, and it is unknown if anyone was inside at the time of the explosion.
The National Police has said that “agents working in the area” and has demanded that people not come to “browse.”
The force stated in a statement: “There was a major explosion in a building on Toledo Street in Madrid.”
“There are agents working in the field now.
“Don’t come to browse, please.
“Groups of people or private vehicles can hinder the arrival and work of the emergency services.”