Officials Order Evacuation In Idaho Town After Gas Line Explosion

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - FEBRUARY 6: Firefighters battle a blaze following an explosion of a gas line on February 6, 2019 in San Francisco, California. Five buildings, including a medical clinic and apartment buildings were evacuated, according to published reports. (Photo by Santiago Mejia-Pool/Getty Images)
(Photo by Santiago Mejia-Pool/Getty Images)

OAN’s Elizabeth Volberding
2:08 PM – Thursday, October 12, 2023

A rural town in Idaho, containing about 10,000 people, has been ordered to evacuate after a gas line exploded at an intersection near the area.


On Thursday, officials in Middleton, Idaho, briefly ordered residents to evacuate the town due to a gas line explosion that occurred near a rural intersection. 

Joe Decker, a spokesperson for the Canyon County Sheriff’s Office, announced that he had not heard of any reported injuries that were connected to the explosion in southwestern Idaho.

Additionally, he claimed that everyone within a 4-mile radius (6.4-kilometer) of the explosion was forced to evacuate. Meanwhile, officials assessed the cause of the situation.

However, the evacuation mandate was lifted soon after, with the sheriff’s office confirming that the gas to the line had been shut off. As a result, residents were told to “shelter in place” instead. The order was removed at around 11:40 a.m. on Thursday after local police ensured that the gas line had been turned off.

There are around 10,600 residents in Middleton, Idaho.

Video footage taken at the scene depicts the explosion’s aftermath, after people allegedly heard a series of “rumble” sounds for several miles.

Many elementary schools in the area were not emptied or told to evacuate. The schools have since resumed class, instructors said.

Several social media accounts for the Canyon County Sheriff’s Office informed residents in the area of the incident after the explosion occurred. Smoke was still seen coming from the intersection where it happened.

Authorities were not able to identify exactly what caused the leak or explosion, although officers from nearby Ada County were still reportedly examining the scene in the afternoon on Thursday.

An Ada County Sheriff shared a tweet soon before the evacuation order was lifted, warning drivers who had been preparing to travel to Idaho State Highway 44 to “stay away” as access to the road remained blocked.

Additional video footage was shared to social media that showed a more detailed and up-close view at the leak that potentially created the explosion, where a steady stream of vapor could be seen coming out of a broken pipe.

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