HomeTop Headlines15 Injured in Gas Pipeline Explosion

15 Injured in Gas Pipeline Explosion

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A serene afternoon in Wappingers Falls, New York, turned chaotic when a gas line explosion leveled a multi-family home and left 15 people injured on November 2, 2023.

The explosion occurred at around 12:15 p.m. at 4 Brick Row, in the heart of the village, when contractors from Central Hudson Gas & Electric reportedly struck a 3/4-inch gas service line. The contractors were performing routine maintenance aimed at replacing aging gas lines when the incident happened.

The force of the blast destroyed a brick building, causing it to collapse and igniting a significant fire that required a substantial emergency response. According to local officials, the building consisted of several apartments across a basement and two floors.

Among the injured were 10 civilians, including eight adults and two children. The nature of their injuries ranged from minor to critical, with three people — one child and two adults — being airlifted to Westchester Medical Center for specialized care. The remaining civilians were transported to local hospitals by ambulance.

Additionally, five first responders suffered injuries while attending the emergency. These included one firefighter and four police officers, who are reported to have sustained minor injuries not believed to be life-threatening. Their quick response, along with over a dozen emergency agencies, played a crucial role in securing the area and ensuring that those injured received prompt medical attention.

State Route 9D near the site of the explosion was closed to traffic as firefighters, police, and gas company workers responded to the scene. New York Governor Kathy Hochul activated state emergency services to support the local response efforts and urged residents to adhere to the directions provided by law enforcement.

In the aftermath, Central Hudson Gas & Electric secured the vicinity, shutting off natural gas and electricity to mitigate further risks. The company said that the gas infrastructure for some of the affected homes dated back to the 1930s or 1940s, highlighting the challenges of aging infrastructure in the region.

The explosion’s impact extended beyond physical damage and injuries. A local café stepped forward, providing free food to those affected by the blast. Governor Hochul’s office confirmed that housing and food assistance would be available for the people left homeless by the event. Officials have not disclosed the full extent of the property damage, but the building that suffered the explosion will be demolished to ensure public safety.

Investigations into the exact cause of the gas line rupture are ongoing. Central Hudson has emphasized its commitment to understanding the circumstances that led to the explosion and is cooperating with investigative agencies.

As recovery efforts continue, the community of Wappingers Falls has shown resilience and unity in the face of this emergency. First responders and healthcare workers have been acknowledged for their efforts to save lives and prevent more injuries.

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