Idaho officials briefly order evacuation of town of about 10,000 people after gas line explodes

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Posted at 1:39 PM, Oct 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-10-12 15:39:39-04

MIDDLETON, Idaho (AP) — Authorities briefly ordered evacuations for most of the town of Middleton, Idaho, after a gas line exploded at nearby rural intersection late Thursday morning.

Canyon County Sheriff’s spokesperson Joe Decker said he did not yet know if any injuries were reported in connection with the explosion in southwestern Idaho. He said people within a 4-mile (6.4-kilometer) radius of the explosion — including the town of about 10,600 people — were ordered to evacuate while authorities evaluated the situation.

The evacuation order was lifted a short time later after the sheriff’s office confirmed the gas to the line had been shut off, and residents were directed to “shelter in place” instead.

Shortly after the explosion, people reported hearing “rumbles” around the area, Decker said.

Residents were alerted to the evacuation order by a reverse 911 call, he said.