AP NEWS

Agency reports detail deadly N Carolina explosion, response

November 19, 2019

DURHAM, N.C. (AP) — Authorities in North Carolina have analyzed their response to a natural gas explosion that killed two people, injured two dozen others, leveled one building and damaged others, some of which have been condemned.

The city and county of Durham last week released fire and emergency management reports that provide a timeline of the April 10 explosion since ruled accidental.

Authorities were alerted to the smell of gas at the busy shopping district at 9:11 a.m. Finding nothing, responders left. A report of a cut gas line called them back about an hour later, and evacuations were underway when the gas ignited. The leak was stopped after another hour.

The reports recommend improved coordination and increased staffing, training and standard compliance, such as those requiring fire personnel wear personal protective equipment.