New York, January 9: Atleast 21 people were left injured in an explosion at a hotel in downtown Fort Worth in Texas possibly caused by a gas leak on Monday afternoon, officials said, the media reported. Fort Worth Fire Department officials said one person is in critical condition following the explosion at the Sandman Signature Hotel, which occurred around 3:30 p.m. local time, ABC News reported.
A gas leak was part of the incident
Fire department officials said a gas leak was part of the incident, but they couldn't immediately determine if it caused the explosion. "We do know that there was some construction that was being done down at the restaurant. We're not 100 per cent sure that that's where it actually started at this point in time," Forth Worth Fire Department spokesman Craig Trojacek told reporters at a news conference.
Fourteen people were transported to area hospitals
It was not known how many of the injured were guests at the hotel or pedestrians. Fourteen people were transported to area hospitals, according to officials as quoted by ABC News report.
Firefighters rescued people who were inside the hotel's basement
One person who was initially unaccounted for was found during a sweep by firefighters, according to officials. Trojacek said that firefighters rescued people who were inside the hotel's basement.
The investigation into the cause is ongoing
Shortly after the explosion, Firefighters were seen going through debris from the incident spread throughout the street, including window pieces and parts of the exterior, ABC News reported. The investigation into the cause is ongoing.
'Everybody removed from that structure'
"We'll talk about the structural integrity ... after that, and we're just trying to make sure that when we walk out of that building, we can definitively say that we've got everybody removed from that structure," Trojacek said.
The hotel opened last May
The hotel, located near the Fort Worth Convention Centre, opened last May following an extensive reconversion of the Waggoner Building, a Fort Worth historical building.
The building was originally built in 1920
The building was originally built in 1920, and "many of the original features" were retained during the conversion, according to the hotel's website. Governor Greg Abbott said in a statement that he was monitoring the situation and ready to deploy additional resources if needed.