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ROME (AP) — An explosion in a gunpowder processing factory in a town in south-central Italy on Monday killed three people, Italian media said.

The ANSA news agency quoted Casalbordino Mayor Filippo Marinucci at the scene as providing the death toll.

Italian firefighters were called to help at the site of the explosion, said the news agency.

A resident of Casalbordino, in Chieti province, inland from the Adriatic Sea, told state television RaiNews24 that some townspeople were ordered to evacuate their homes as a precaution.

The cause of the explosion was under investigation, said the report.