Nine people confirmed to have died following Donegal petrol station explosion
Two more fatalities have been confirmed.
The number of confirmed fatalities after an explosion at a petrol station in Donegal has risen from seven to nine.
The blast occurred at around 3.20pm on Friday (7 October) at the Applegreen Service Station in Creeslough.
In a statement just before midday on Saturday, Gardaí said they continue to work with other emergency services at the scene of the incident for a search and recovery operation.
A Garda spokesperson confirmed nine fatalities following the explosion and said that the "search and recovery for further fatalities continues".
"An Garda Síochána continue to request that any road users intending to travel to the Creeslough area for any reason consider alternative routes as emergency services continue to deal with this ongoing incident," they stated.
"Traffic diversions remain in place at this time."
In a statement following the explosion, Applegreen's founder and chief executive Joe Barrett described it as a "hugely tragic event" and offered the company's deepest sympathies to the families and friends of those who died and to the community of Creeslough.
"We are utterly shocked and saddened at what happened yesterday. I would also like to offer our thanks to the emergency services, and first responders, who are dealing with the incident," he added.
"We have been working with our local partners in Creeslough since 2014. We are providing them with assistance and support locally at this very difficult time.
"The Applegreen in Creeslough is at the very heart of the village and contains the local post office and supermarket.
"Our thoughts and our prayers are with the people of Creeslough. Today we mourn those who have lost their lives alongside the entire country.
"We will continue to assist and support our partners, and the wider Creeslough community, in the days and weeks ahead.”
"Our sympathies and our hearts go out to the families and friends of those who have lost their lives and those who have been injured, to the entire community," he told the programme.
"Communities are what, I think, defines our people and we're witnessing a terrible, terrible tragedy on a wonderful community in Creeslough.
"Our thoughts and our prayers are with them."
The Taoiseach said the Government will ensure that "all the services of the State will be there for the people and the community" in the times ahead.
Meanwhile, President Michael D. Higgins issued a statement in which he expressed "the shock shared by all people throughout the country" on learning of the tragedy in Creeslough.
"All of our thoughts must go out to all of those who have been affected. Those who have received news of the loss of a loved one, those injured and, most of all, those who are waiting with anxiety for news of their loved ones," he said.
"This tragedy is a terrible blow to a community that is closely knit and where every loss and injury will be felt by every member of the community and far beyond.
"Special tribute must be paid to those members of the local community and emergency services across the island who have reacted so swiftly to the scene of the explosion and have continued to work through the night.
"All of our best thoughts and prayers go to those who have lost their lives and their families.
"Ar dheis Dé go raibh a n-anamacha.”