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Man Killed in Gas Line Explosion

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Jarod Cassidy3 years ago

A member of a mowing crew was killed Tuesday in a natural gas explosion in Rusk County, roughly 12 miles outside of Henderson, Texas.

About the Rusk County Gas Explosion

KWTX reports that the crew was clearing a right of way for a natural gas pipeline when the line was struck and ruptured by a mulcher, resulting in an gas leak and explosion. The man operating the mulcher was killed in the explosion – his identity has not been released.

Sgt. David Roberts with the Rusk County Sheriff’s Office reported that the explosion did not result in a fire. Residents in the area were evacuated for a short time and allowed to return home Tuesday night.

There were no other injuries reported.

Causes of Gas Explosions

Gas explosions begin with a leak. As gas is released into the air, it mixes with common chemicals like oxygen and carbon dioxide. Once the gas to air ratio reaches a certain point, it becomes volatile and will ignite upon coming in contact with a sufficient heat source.

When ignited, the gas mixture begins to expand, building pressure until the object confining the gas gives. The final result is a loud, violent explosion.

Among the most common causes of gas explosions are:

  • Excavation near a pipeline
  • Defective valves
  • Faulty piping
  • Negligent maintenance
  • Damage meters and regulators

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