ONE person has been killed, and several critically injured, after an explosion destroyed three homes in Baltimore.

Several people were reported trapped or missing in the rubble following the Monday morning blast, including some children.

Three houses were "completely destroyed" on Reistertown Road in Pikesville, in the city's northwest, authorities said.

One person was pronounced dead at the scene, according to firefighters.

Shocking footage posted on social media showed smoke billowing into the air above the levelled homes, and debris littering the street.

Firefighters on the scene said the situation is "borderline mass casualty at this point," according to the Baltimore Sun.

"This explosion has affected at least a three block radius," meaning three residential properties.

A strong odor of gas was reported in the area.

There have been no reports of an explosive device.

More to come.

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