The Mayor of Reims Adeline Hazan has told the French news agency BFM TV that at least "two people were killed" in the accident at a four storey block of flats in the city.
Initial reports on local French media suggest the explosion may have been caused by a gas leak.
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A Hurricane in the Atlantic is set to bring rain in the north this weekend - but it could mean better weather for the south.
Early cloud and rain will slowly clear away from southeast England and East Anglia.