Gas explosion at downtown Fort Worth hotel injures 21: officials

Firefighters said there were no immediate reports of casualties.

An explosion at a downtown Fort Worth, Texas hotel, likely caused by a gas leak, injured 21 people, sent debris across a block and forced the evacuation of nearby employees Monday afternoon.

Fort Worth Fire Department officials say one person is in critical condition following an explosion at the Sandman Signature Hotel around 3:30 p.m. local time.

Fire officials said a gas leak was part of the incident, but it was not immediately clear if there was an explosion.

“We know there was some construction going on at the restaurant. We're not 100% sure at this point where it actually started,” Fort Worth Fire Department spokesman Craig Trojacek told reporters. Conference.

It is not known how many of the injured were hotel guests or pedestrians. According to officials, 14 people were taken to area hospitals.

According to officials, a person who was not initially located was found during a sweep by firefighters.

Trojacek said firefighters rescued the occupants of the hotel's basement.

Shortly after the explosion, firefighters waded through debris from the incident across the street, including shards of windows and exteriors.

An investigation into the cause is underway.

“We'll talk about structural integrity … and then, when we leave that building, we can say with certainty that we've removed everyone from that structure,” Trojacek said. said.

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Located near the Fort Worth Convention Center, the hotel opened last May following an extensive renovation of the historic Fort Worth Wagoner Building.

The building was originally built in 1920, and “many original features” were retained during the conversion, according to the hotel's website.

Governor Greg Abbott said in a statement that he is monitoring the situation and is prepared to deploy additional resources if necessary.

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