Authorities, gas company to assess pipeline explosion damage - KCTV5

Authorities, gas company to assess pipeline explosion damage

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A large fire has been reported just north of Kansas City International Airport and west of Smithville. (KCTV5) A large fire has been reported just north of Kansas City International Airport and west of Smithville. (KCTV5)
SMITHVILLE, MO (KCTV) -

Local authorities and a gas company representative will assess damage Wednesday and investigate the cause of the pipeline rupture that caused a fiery explosion north of the Kansas City International Airport.

The propane pipeline belongs to a company called Enterprise Gas. A worker with the company is on the way to the explosion site, according to the Platte County Sheriff's Office.

The pipeline rupture was declared under control without injuries about 10 p.m. Tuesday, as crews worked to secure the area of the explosion. 

The fire could be seen up to 15 miles away. A pipeline with liquid propane ruptured, causing the massive fire, said Sgt. Jeffrey Shanks with the Platte County Sheriff's Office.

"It just looked like the sun was coming out … it was that bright from where we were at,” neighbor Kameo Patch said.

Shanks said the fire was in a remote location on the edge of the county about three to four miles in a field west of Smithville.

"Initially there was a concern because of the size of the fire a call went out that there may a structure involved but that was not determined there was not a structure involved," Shanks said. "It's literally a pipeline that ruptured in the middle of a field."

Contractors shut off the line in both directions and fire crews worked their way in to contain the fire until it burned itself out late in the night

"The advantage of the location is obviously there a limited number of structures. It's out in a field and there's limited amount of damage," Shanks said. "The bad news is there is also limited access for fire crews."

Some of the contractors seen on site Tuesday night were with Enterprise Gas.

Through a statement, a spokersperson for Enterprise said "once the residual product is out of the line, company personnel can begin the process of evaluating and repairing the pipeline."

KCTV5's Marc Jacobs and Shain Bergan contributed to this report.

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