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7 injured in Texas natural gas pipeline explosions

7 injured in Texas natural gas pipeline explosions

MIDLAND, Texas (AP) — The number of people injured in a series of explosions on a West Texas natural gas pipeline has risen to seven.

Authorities initially said five people — a volunteer firefighter and four pipeline employees — were hurt Wednesday when the explosions happened about 20 miles (30 kilometers) southeast of Midland. But city spokeswoman Elana Ladd tells KOSA-TV in Odessa that two others also were hurt.

The Midland Fire Department responded around 11:30 a.m. to a pipeline explosion on Farm-to-Market Road 1379, about 5 miles south of Highway 158, according the Midland Reporter-Telegram. After suppressing the fire, there were two more small explosions about an hour later.

Ladd didn’t immediately return a phone message Thursday to say whether the other two victims were firefighters or pipeline workers.

Authorities say firefighters had suppressed the fire from the initial explosion when two explosions followed in quick succession.

Authorities haven’t said what caused the explosions.