Minneapolis Fire Department Responds to Building Collapse

Minneapolis school explosion levels building

As many as nine others were injured in the blast Wednesday morning, including Bryan Duffey.

The private Christian school was rocked by a blast that shook nearby buildings and blew out windows.

By late Wednesday afternoon, one of the victims - Bryan Duffey - was still in critical condition.

Initially, the Minneapolis Fire Department reported that one person had been killed but later retracted that report.

Employees of a food-services company were interviewing job candidates at the building Wednesday, said Alex Buck, the digital media director of Taher Inc. of Minnetonka. "If this had been the school year, oh my God, it would have been bad".

A second body was found in the rubble after a natural gas explosion took down a school building Wednesday in the midwestern USA state of Minnesota, authorities said.

One person remains unaccounted for at Minnehaha Academy.

"We still consider it a rescue at this point", Fruetel said, adding that the situation was "precarious" with two floors of unstable debris that could still collapse during the search.

All students at Minnehaha Academy were accounted for, some fleeing the building at the school for grades kindergarten to 12 just moments before the explosion.

Officials suspect the explosion was caused when a contractor working on the building ruptured a gas line.

Hundreds of people packed a campus chapel to pray and comfort each other at the Minneapolis school where two people were killed and more than a-half dozen others were hurt in an explosion and partial building collapse.

"All of sudden we heard some guy say 'gas, gas, '" student Erik Ostrem said. One witness said two men yelled "gas" shortly before the blast.

One school staff member has been found dead and another is still missing following a natural gas explosion Wednesday at a private school in Minneapolis, authorities said. The upper campus houses grades 9-12, while elementary and middle school students are housed at the lower campus a few blocks farther south on West River Parkway. In addition, 5 people were transported to hospital, 1 of which was treated and released.

Philip Day, who was with his daughter in the building, said a staff member ran up to them and told them they needed to evacuate immediately. She also said there were faculty from the school in the area of the explosion and that their condition was unknown. All of those reported missing or injured are adults, they said.

At the time of the explosion, girls participating in summer cross-country practice, as well as basketball and soccer players were among the people on campus.

Flames shoot up as firefighters train water hoses on the scene of a collapsed building following an explosion at Minnehaha Academy in Minneapolis.

'It was just a really loud boom, ' one resident told KARE 11.

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