Gas blast at Mass. strip club under investigation

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (AP) — Investigators are trying to figure out what caused the natural gas explosion that ripped apart a strip club and heavily damaged a dozen other buildings in Springfield, Mass.

Many of the 18 injured were first responders to a call about a gas leak and odor. No one was killed, possibly because officials had already evacuated part of the area.

Teams of inspectors are scheduled to assess the damage to other buildings in downtown Springfield today and some controlled demolition is expected.

The explosion blew out windows in a three-block radius, leaving at least three buildings irreparably damaged and causing emergency workers to evacuate a six-story apartment building that was buckling. Pieces of broken glass littered streets and sidewalks.

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206-a-11-(Sheila Doiron (DOOR'-an), spokeswoman, Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, in AP interview)-"the building exploded"-Spokeswoman Sheila Doiron, with Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, says the gas was off before the blast. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *206 (11/23/12)>> 00:11 "the building exploded"

205-a-07-(Sheila Doiron (DOOR'-an), spokeswoman, Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, in AP interview)-"in this area"-Spokeswoman Sheila Doiron, with Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, says officials don't know yet what might have a gas leak. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *205 (11/23/12)>> 00:07 "in this area"

207-a-10-(Sheila Doiron (DOOR'-an), spokeswoman, Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, in AP interview)-"started going down"-Spokeswoman Sheila Doiron, with Columbia Gas of Massachusetts, says a crew was working on site investigating a call about a gas leak when the blast happened. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *207 (11/23/12)>> 00:10 "started going down"

195-a-03-(Tim Murray, Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor, at news conference)-"no one killed"-Massachusetts Lieutenant Governor Tim Murray says the blast could have been deadly. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *195 (11/23/12)>> 00:03 "no one killed"

193-a-06-(Joe Conant (KOH'-nant), Springfield Fire Commissioner, at news conference)-"with collateral damage"-Springfield Fire Commissioner Joe Conant says the blast damaged about two dozen buildings. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *193 (11/23/12)>> 00:06 "with collateral damage"

192-a-11-(Stephen Coan (kohn), Massachusetts State Fire Marshal, at news conference)-"able to identify"-Massachusetts State Fire Marshal Steve Coan says the cause of the blast is being investigated. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *192 (11/23/12)>> 00:11 "able to identify"

191-a-11-(Stephen Coan (kohn), Massachusetts State Fire Marshal, at news conference)-"building of origin"-Massachusetts State Fire Marshal Steve Coan says utility crews were investigating a gas leak when the blast happened. (23 Nov 2012)

<<CUT *191 (11/23/12)>> 00:11 "building of origin"

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