Wisconsin gas explosion levels of Main Street buildings; fire, police officer reported injured



Tremendous damage to Wisconsin neighborhood after gas explosion

Raw video: gas leak explodes in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin the cause of major damage to the environment.

An explosion rocked the city of Sun Prairie, Wis., on Tuesday after a contractor struck a natural gas main, leveling buildings and injuring at least two firefighters and a police officer, authorities said.

No deaths were immediately reported, said Lt. Kevin Konopacki of the Sun Prairie Police Department. The firefighters were rushed to a hospital, while the officer and some residents were treated at the scene.

Several buildings around Main Street, an area full of bars, restaurants and other businesses, were blown down, Madison WISC-TV reported, quoting the police.

The fire brigade and the police responded to an alert gas leak in the city is the center of the field around 6:20 a.m., before the explosion, authorities said. They were evacuated to a five-block radius as the explosion occurred, likely saving lives.

#NBC15 gas explosion in sun prairie

— bdhayes (@bdhayes1) July 11, 2018

WE Energies spokeswoman Cathy Schulze said the gas main strike was reported to the utility ahead of the explosion, and the first reactions were, for the exit of the gas to secure the area.

Contractors apparently have a hole of a 4-inch main that sent gas leakage in a building, WE Energies spokeswoman Amy Jahns said.

The @glassnickel building is completely flooded from the #barrhouse #explosion that took place on Main St in #sunprairie, You can hear a small explosion.

— Megan Sheridan (@bymegansheridan) July 11, 2018

The explosion was reported around 7:15 p.m., and seemed to be aimed at the Barr House, a local pub. Video posted on social media shows a blazing fire with smoke billowing into the sky, amid a heavy presence of the police.

Firefighters were fighting the flames more than three hours after the explosion, Konpacki said. The buildings would be searched as soon as the fires were.

Buildings leveled in Sun Prairie after the massive explosion on Main Street. #WKOW #sunprairie #explosion

— David Johnson (@DavidWKOW) July 11, 2018

An employee of Madison WMTV-TV said that his “whole house shook” of the explosion.

Steve Owen, 60, owner of a small company, said he saw the fire brigade and police on the street just before the explosion. He said that he saw a ball of fire as the building on the other side of the street “literally lifted off the ground.”

“People were scrambling,” Owen said.

Sun Prairie explosion-UPDATE: ~125 residents at our front desk at Sun Prairie High School (888 Grove St.), with food, water, info. If it is safe for you to travel, the evacuated residents can join us as we await the next steps. Thanks for thoughts and patience as this develops.

— Red Cross – Wisconsin (@RedCrossWIS) July 11, 2018

The Red Cross of Wisconsin, tweeted that the personenel the setting up of a shelter for displaced residents at a local high school.

The authorities were still working until late in the evening to determine when the residents can return to their homes.

This is a developing story; check back for updates. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Nicole Darrah cover breaking and trending news for Follow her on Twitter @nicoledarrah.

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