Gas Line Explosion in Pennsylvania Town Leads to Dozens of Evacuations

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Dozens of people were evacuated early Monday after a gas line explosion in a small western Pennsylvania community.

Flames light up the sky early Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, after a gas line explosion in Center Township, Pennsylvania. (Credit: Aaron Kaiser/Twitter)

There were no injuries as a result of the blast shortly before 5 a.m. in Center Township, police Chief Barry Kramer said. However, he said, “The main goal was to evacuate.”

Dramatic video of a subsequent fire was widely shared on social media, with footage of the flames lighting up the sky.

“The entire sky was orange,” resident Chelsea Guthrie told CNN. “The flames were coming up about 10 or 15 feet above the tree line.”

The Dallas-based Energy Transfer owns and operates the line, according to Kramer.

The utility company had shut off the line by 5:52 a.m., Kramer said, allowing first responders to get a closer look. “There was damage to a house, garage and vehicles,” he said.

A reverse 911 system was used to call and evacuate people in up to 30 homes as a precaution. Some evacuated residents had to seek temporary shelter in a nearby fire hall and were cared for by the American Red Cross.

Police reported that schools in the area have been closed for the day. Authorities said residents will be safe to return their homes as soon as Energy Transfer gives the all-clear.

The company has not responded to CNN’s request for comment.

Center Township, a community of around 12,000 people, is about 25 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.

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