A damaged gas line likely sparked an explosion that leveled a home in a Murrieta neighborhood, leaving at least one person dead and 15 others injured, CBS Los Angeles reports. The explosion occurred before 12:15 p.m. in an area where crews initially responded due to a ruptured gas line.
Crews from Southern California Gas Co. crews arrived at 11:23 a.m. to being repair work on the line, but at 12:10 p.m., an explosion occurred, Murrieta Fire & Rescue Deputy Chief David Lantzer told CBS Los Angeles.
At an afternoon news conference, SoCalGas officials confirmed that one of the company's workers was killed in the blast.
"We are incredibly saddened that we have a loss of one of our employees today at this incident," SoCalGas spokesman Randon Lane said. "We are not releasing any information at this time as the investigation unfolds and the family has yet to be informed."
A second SoCalGas employee was rushed to a hospital. CBS Los Angeles confirmed that three firefighters were among the injured. Crews were able to shut off the gas by 1 p.m.
Lantzer told reporters at an afternoon news conference that an active investigation was underway into the explosion.