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1 FF, 2 civilians injured in aftermath of Fla. gas leak, explosion

Nine agencies responded to the gas leak at a home that resulted in an explosion and fire on Thursday

Mark Young and Ryan Ballogg
The Bradenton Herald

MANATEE, Fla. — Three people were injured in the aftermath of a natural gas leak and explosion in Bradenton on Thursday, according to Cedar Hammock Fire Control District.

Two of the individuals were inside of a home in the 800 block of 29th Avenue West when an explosion and fire due to the gas leak occurred, according to the fire department. A firefighter also sustained non-life-threatening injuries during rescue operations.

The two residents were transported to Blake Medical Center for care. As of Thursday evening, their condition was unknown.

The gas leak also caused the closure of large stretch of 30th Avenue West for several hours Thursday as emergency crews worked to contain the situation.

As of 5 p.m., 30th Avenue West remained closed from Ninth Street West to Third Street West, according to Manatee County Sheriff’s Office.

Cedar Hammock Fire Rescue responded to a report about the natural gas leak in the 2900 block of Ninth Street West just before 11:30 a.m. The gas was coming from lines operated by TECO Energy, according to the fire department, and representatives of the company were also on scene. The explosion at the residence on 29th Avenue occurred just after 2 p.m., according to the fire department.

TECO representatives were later able to pinpoint and stop the leak, which was attributed to a buildup of gas in sewer lines.

Florida Power and Light also responded and cut power to businesses and homes in the area in order to cut off ignition sources.

The sheriff’s office used a reverse 911 call to warn residents in the area to evacuate or shelter in place as firefighters checked and evacuated buildings within the perimeter, according to the fire department.

Emergency workers from nine agencies in Bradenton, Manatee County, Sarasota County, as well as the Division of State Fire Marshal were involved in the response effort.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.


(c)2020 The Bradenton Herald (Bradenton, Fla.)

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