9 firefighters hurt in Seattle blast, residents evacuated - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

9 firefighters hurt in Seattle blast, residents evacuated

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Courtesy: KING 5 Lauren Campbell Courtesy: KING 5 Lauren Campbell
Courtesy: KING 5 Peter Walchenbach Courtesy: KING 5 Peter Walchenbach

SEATTLE (AP) - The Latest on a natural gas explosion in Seattle (all times local):
    
2 p.m.

Seattle Mayor Ed Murray says 36 businesses were damaged in the early morning gas explosion in the Greenwood neighborhood. During a news conference next to the rubble, Murray said the city will help the region rebuild.
    
Seattle Fire Chief Harold Scoggins says he is proud of the way his firefighters put themselves in the right position as they investigated reports of a gas leak. He says their training kept them from getting killed when the explosion happened.
    
Puget Sound Energy spokesman Andy Wappler says they're supporting the investigation, but the cause remains unclear. It was not known if the problem came from inside or outside the building. He says gas lines are inspected every three years, but he didn't know when the pipes in the area had last been inspected.

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UPDATE: SEATTLE, Wash. - Among the businesses damaged or destroyed in a natural gas explosion in a North Seattle neighborhood was Neptune Coffee, Mr. Gyro and a bike shop called G&O Family Cyclery.
    
Harborview Medical Center spokeswoman Susan Gregg said no one who lived or worked in the neighborhood has been treated at the hospital. By 7:15, only four of the firefighters who were being treated for minor cuts and abrasions were still at the center.
    
Gregg said those four were being discharged.
    
As the morning dawned, the extent of the damage could be seen. Pieces of wood and chunks of broken glass littered the streets. Windows on surrounding buildings were shattered as smoke streamed from the rubble.
    
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Authorities say nine Seattle fire fighters are injured and residents have been evacuated following a natural gas explosion.
 
Fire department spokeswoman Corey Orvold says crews are fighting flames following the blast early Wednesday.
 
She says all the injured fire fighters are being treated for minor wounds at a hospital.
 
The blast and fire occurred in the city's Greenwood neighborhood after fire fighters responded to a report of a natural gas leak.
 
Orvold says that about 40 minutes after they arrived an explosion rocked the area.
 
There is no word of any other injuries or anyone missing. But Orvold says dogs are being used to go through the rubble just in case.
 
An undetermined number of residents of two nearby buildings have been evacuated.
 
She says at least one building and possibly two have been heavily damaged, while several others in the area have shattered windows and other problems.

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