MSNBC reports a natural gas explosion accident occurred around 10:45 p.m. on Wednesday, February 9, in Allentown, PA. At least three people were killed in the blast, including a 4-month-old child, and two others are missing.
According to the Allentown fire department, a two-story row house exploded, causing the house and another to be leveled. UGI Corp. stated early Thursday that it is likely one of its natural-gas pipelines exploded, which prompted the accident and the blaze. The explosion was so powerful it was felt in Bethlehem, PA, about nine miles away from Allentown.
Two row homes were set on fire, as were six others. Witnesses to the accident state the flames were hundreds of feet in the air, and it took firefighters several hours to put the fire out. Firefighters were delayed by the complexity of digging through the snow and ice to access the ruptured gas line underground, which was fueling the flames. Between 500 and 600 residents of the area were evacuated.