300 flee as Olympic hospitality venue sets ablaze

A gas barbecue caught fire and exploded Wednesday night at New Zealand's Olympic hospitality center, forcing the evacuation of some 300 people.

Firefighters said no one was injured during the fire outside Kiwi House in the King's Cross district of central London.

Pictures posted on social media sites showed the BBQ site, with wood walls and a canopy, on fire.

London Fire Station Manager Richard Welch said witnesses described two cylinders attached to the barbeque catching fire and exploding before firefighters arrived.

"Crews have now brought the blaze under control and are cooling a further two gas cylinders down to make them safe," Welch said.

Two fire engines and 10 firefighters were involved in the operation.

Kiwi House is one of many special Olympic venues scattered across London that provide national focal points for fans to watch the London Games and sample the food and culture of particular nations.

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