South Texas gas pipeline blast leads to evacuations, no injuries

The Associated Press

A fiery natural gas pipeline explosion in South Texas has forced dozens of people from their homes and canceled classes at a nearby school.

ENCINAL, Texas (AP) — A fiery natural gas pipeline explosion in South Texas has forced dozens of people from their homes and canceled classes at a nearby school.

Nobody was hurt in the accident before dawn Friday near Encinal (EN'-suh-nahl), 25 miles north of Laredo. Authorities are seeking the cause of the blast.

City Manager Velma Davila (DAH'-vee-lah) says 30 to 40 people who live near the gas pipeline evacuated to Encinal City Hall, as a precaution.

Davila says classes were canceled Friday at Encinal Elementary School, about 500 yards from the gas pipeline. She says gas to the line has been cut and the fire was being allowed to burn itself out.

The gas pipeline operator, San Antonio-based Lewis Energy Group, says the fire happened around 4:15 a.m. CDT Friday. Emergency personnel monitored the situation.

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