- Associated Press - Friday, March 14, 2014

FREMONT, Neb. (AP) - No injured were reported Friday after a natural gas pipeline explosion shot flames 60 feet in the air in eastern Nebraska.

The line erupted about 8:30 a.m. about six miles north of Fremont. No structures were damaged, according to the Fremont Tribune (http://bit.ly/1gwMlFC ).

Firefighters from four departments were dispatched, and Joe Riggle of the Nickerson department said rigs from his and the Hooper departments were still on the scene late Friday morning to ensure the fire didn’t spread.

The flames from the original explosion subsided after the gas flow was curtailed. But Riggle said the original inferno caused a second fire to erupt at a natural gas line across the road. Riggle said the second line likely began to vent gas as it got hot, so the vented gas was touched off into a flame.

The heat kept firefighters and gas company workers from getting close enough to see what caused the original blast.

The flow to the second pipe has been turned off, and Riggle said the fire was expected to burn for at least three more hours, until the supply left in the pipeline is exhausted.

Keith and Marcia Johnson left their house in a hurry after their heard the first explosion.

“We looked out of our window and there was a huge ball of fire,” said Marcia Johnson. “We grabbed our clothes and ran out because our house is on the natural gas line. Keith doesn’t even have his shoes.”

Wayne Francis lives about 2½ miles from the blast site and told the newspaper “it sounded like a jet.”


Information from: Fremont Tribune, http://www.fremontneb.com

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