Kentucky gas explosion: 1 dead after ruptured line causes blast, fires, officials say

Credit: Naomi Hayes via AP

Credit: Naomi Hayes via AP

Kentucky State Police said all people have been accounted after a massive gas explosion rocked Lincoln County early Thursday, claiming the life of a woman and injuring five other people.

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Update 3:35 p.m. EDT Aug. 1: The woman killed in Thursday morning's gas explosion has been identified.

Lincoln County Coroner Farris Marcum told WLEX-TV the 58-year-old woman was identified as Lisa Denise Derringer.

Kentucky State Police said they believe Derringer might have heard the explosion when it happened around 1:20 a.m. Thursday and left her home to investigate. Trooper Robert Purdy said she might have become "overtaken by the heat" put off by the explosion.

Authorities continue to investigate the cause of the blast.

Update 1:20 p.m. EDT Aug. 1: Trooper Robert Purdy said an autopsy will be performed to confirm the cause of death for a 58-year-old woman killed in Thursday morning's blast.

"We do not believe at this point that there are going to be other fatalities," he said at a news conference. "We believe we have everyone accounted for."

Purdy said a Lincoln County deputy suffered injuries that did not appear to be life-threatening after he responded to the explosion and spotted a man walking outside with a cane and a flashlight. The man told the deputy he needed to find his wife. The deputy was able to locate the woman and took them both to a hospital, Purdy said.

"Without him being there at the right time, we could have had more fatalities and casualties than what we had," he said.

Purdy said the explosion left the landscape barren, destroying at least five homes and damaging several others.

Officials continue to investigate the cause of the explosion.

Original report: At least one person is dead after a ruptured gas line exploded in Kentucky, authorities said.

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According to WKYT-TV, the blast, which occurred early Thursday in Moreland, forced residents to evacuate their homes and officials to close part of U.S. Highway 127. The explosion also sparked fires in the Indian Camp Trailer Park, officials told the TV station.

So far, the Lincoln County Coroner's Office has confirmed one death in the incident, WLEX-TV reported. Five people were hurt, authorities said.

The explosion also damaged railroad tracks, WLEX reported.

Enbridge Inc. owns the ruptured line, according to WLEX.

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