ELLSWORTH, Kan. (KSNW) – No one was injured when a pipeline exploded in Ellsworth County on Thursday. The natural gas line exploded about 1:45 p.m.
A large plume of fire was seen by motorists on nearby Interstate 70 about 15 miles northeast of the city of Ellsworth.
Bob Kepka with the Ellsworth Fire Department said flames were visible in Lincoln about 30 miles away. Debris from the pipeline was scattered in the area as the aftermath of the explosion.
A grass fire ignited by the explosion also was brought under control. A local rancher moved cattle off the property to avoid any potential dangers.
A representative with Northern Natural Gas Company said they do not know what caused the pipeline to explode. The pipeline is currently under repair and is empty of any natural gas. The gas company stated there is no threat to the public.
The line is one of several that run in parallel with other pipelines from different parts of Kansas and Oklahoma, north to Nebraska and Iowa.
Last week, on Thursday, there was a leak on a well near Lyons, which the company owns. The company asked 15 people within a one-mile distance to leave their homes but only out of an abundance of caution.