An explosion in downtown Fort Worth, Texas, injured at least 21 people on Monday, at least one of them critically.
Authorities reported an explosion at the Sandman Signature hotel in Fort Worth.
Aerial footage showed debris from a building scattered over the area of several streets. Other video appeared to show at least one injured person receiving treatment from a medical technician.
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives spokesperson Sara Abel told The Associated Press authorities believed the explosion was caused by natural gas.
The Fort Worth Fire Department has yet to confirm the cause of the explosion.
“There is a smell of gas in the area and there are windows and things that were blown outside of the structure,” Fort Worth Fire Department spokesman Craig Trojacek said.
The fire department said it extinguished a fire at the scene. Rescue crews found several victims trapped in a basement at the scene.
More than two dozen of the rooms were occupied at the time of the explosion, officials said.
In a post on X, The Fort Worth Fire Department characterized the explosion as a "major incident" and warned residents to avoid the area.
Nine ambulances were dispatched to assist victims, according to local emergency services. In addition to the one critical injury, two people were seriously injured and the rest had minor injuries, authorities said. Four other people were treated for injuries and released at the scene.
Tarrant County, where Fort Worth is located, closed all of its offices in the downtown area following the incident.
Federal authorities as well as Texas energy regulators were investigating the explosion.
Authorities had established an area nearby for families to meet after the incident.
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