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article imageSeven sent to hospitals after pipeline explosions in Texas

By Karen Graham     Aug 2, 2018 in Environment
A series of natural gas pipeline explosions in Midland County, Texas sent seven people to the hospital with critical burn injuries, and interrupted energy pipeline operations in the area, officials said.
Authorities on Thursday are investigating what caused a fire and a series of natural gas pipeline explosions southeast of Midland. The first explosion occurred at 11:30 a.m. After that fire was suppressed, a second and third explosion followed at 12:30 p.m. The cause is not yet known, according to FM 1379. KWES.
Midland public information officer Elana Ladd said the operator of the pipeline is not known yet, nor has the cause of the original explosions been determined.
Five workers were critically injured in the explosions and fire and were airlifted to University Medical Center in Lubbock, Texas where they are being treated in the hospital's burn unit. One worker remains in critical condition and three others have had their conditions upgraded to serious condition on Thursday. The status of the fifth worker was not immediately known.
Kinder Morgan Inc's El Paso Natural Gas (EPNG) line was damaged by the blaze. Company spokeswoman Sara Hughes said in an email it appeared a problem with a third-party pipeline nearby caused the blaze. Kinder-Morgan is evaluating the damage to its pipeline.
"There was a third-party pipeline involved that also experienced a failure, and preliminary indications are that the third-party line failure occurred before the EPNG line failure," Hughes said.
As of Thursday morning, investigators have still not been able to identify the operators of the other pipelines involved in the explosions.
More about Pipeline explosion, Natural gas, midland texas, multiple pipelines, thirdparty pipeline