CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) – A dredger in a port in Texas hit a natural gas pipeline on Friday, causing an explosion that left six people hospitalized and four others missing.
The US Coast Guard said the four missing were crew members on the Waymon L Boyd dredger. The explosion occurred around 8 a.m. in the port of Corpus Christi.
Corpus Christi Fire Brigade chief Robert Rocha said firefighters “encountered severe fire and smoke conditions” upon arrival. By late Friday morning, the utility line that fed the fire had been turned off and it went out, Rocha said.
Emergency teams respond to a pipeline explosion near Lantana and Up River Road in Corpus Christi, Texas on Friday, August 21, 2020. Several people were hospitalized after a pipeline in the Port and Refinery Districts of Friday Corpus Christi had exploded.(Courtney Sacco / Corpus Christi call times via AP)
Marina Lawrence, Lt. the Coast Guard said the ship hit a submerged pipeline. The Corpus Christi port said in a statement that a natural gas pipeline was involved and that the operators had isolated it.
Rocha said that of the six people who were admitted to hospital, one was in serious condition. He said the fire department took four people to the hospital while the U.S. Coast Guard transported two people.
Pipeline explosion near grain port in Corpus Christi @callerdotcom pic.twitter.com/hhoXV0Ae7d
– Courtney Sacco (@Caller_Courtney) August 21, 2020
Texas Governor Greg Abbott made a statement stating that the state is working closely with government agencies in the area and that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality monitors air quality.
Rocha said most of the heavy smoke was blowing into a rural area.
The National Transportation Safety Board said it was investigating the accident.
Explanation of the pipeline explosion in Corpus Christi: pic.twitter.com/Uy9TG9D2Or
– Governor Greg Abbott (@GovAbbott) August 21, 2020
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