There was no immediate word on the cause of the blast, which the agency said had caused a number of buildings to collapse. Kyodo said one person was in critical condition.
Police and firefighters worked to get the site in the city’s Toyohira ward under control, fighting flames and smoke, and warned people in the neighborhood of the possibility of another explosion, the agency reported.
The explosion happened at 8.30 p.m. (1130 GMT), Kyodo reported. Eyewitnesses reported smelling gas in the area following the explosion, the agency said.