Manhattan explosion
Onlookers stand behind a police cordon near the site of an explosion in the Chelsea neighbourhood of Manhattan, New York, US, on September 17, 2016.Reuters

An explosion rocked a really busy neighbourhood of Manhattan on the evening of Saturday, leading to at least 25 people being injured, with some sources putting the number at as high as 30.

Manhattan is one of the five boroughs that make up New York City, and is known to be the most densely populated among the five, meaning any untoward occurrence there would maximise the damage because of the population density.

Sources say the explosion, which rocked the bustling Chelsea neighbourhood of Manhattan, may have occurred in a dumpster, but foul play was not being ruled out, even as emergency services rushed to the spot to assess the situation and aid the blast victims.

New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio has said there is no evidence that points to the blast, which took place at 8:30 p.m. local time, was connected to terrorism. However, he went on to add that he had proof that the explosion was an "intentional act."

Meanwhile, Reuters reports that a local police official has said a second explosive device, which could have been intended for a second blast, has been discovered. This has given rise to speculation that this could have been a case of organised crime.

The a top fire service official in New York later pegged the number of those hurt in the blast at 29, but said none of their injuries was life-threatening.

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