One person has died and 17 others were injured after a fiery explosion in Durham, North Carolina, Wednesday morning, according to officials.
The blast was felt city-wide, according to Durham Fire Chief Robert Zoldos.
The explosion was caused by a gas leak after a contractor drilling into the sidewalk struck a 2-inch gas line, said Durham police.
The explosion impacted five buildings, causing catastrophic damage to one, police said. The fire has since been contained.
The person who died in the incident has been identified as 61-year-old Kong Lee.
At least six people were hospitalized in critical condition, according to officials.
A firefighter is among the injured and underwent surgery, Zoldos said. His condition is considered serious but not life threatening, Zoldos said.
A Dominion Energy worker was also hurt, according to the city.
Construction worker Tyler Headrick said he saw a cloud of smoke before the building crumbled and people started to flee, he told ABC Raleigh station WTVD.
What I saw when I arrived to the scene pic.twitter.com/TQLrFns5DD— Tim Pulliam (@TimABC11) April 10, 2019
What a picture from person working on a building in downtown @CityofDurhamNC. @DurhamPoliceNC say contractor working hit a gas line. One person is dead. One firefighter has serious injuries and multiple others have been taken to the hospital. #ABC11 pic.twitter.com/nTDXU3ULwB— Josh Chapin (@JoshChapinABC11) April 10, 2019