Durham releases 2 reports on fatal gas explosion response

Durham County News

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – Two separate reports have been released concerning the response by Durham Emergency Management and the Durham Fire Department to the April 10 fatal gas explosion.

Durham City/County Emergency Management Department report

City of Durham Fire Department report

City Manager Thomas Bonfield and Durham City/County Emergency Management Director Jim Groves requested the reports to help provide insight into best practices and such related to future incidents.

Durham, Orange and Wake counties are currently working to increase their responses to a “Complex Coordinated Terrorist Attack.”

Durham looked at the response to the gas explosion “since it included many similar elements to the CCTA regional coordination plan.”

“Lessons learned and recommendations have been analyzed with regard to future incidents that may pose similar operational challenges to our response and recovery capability,” said Groves.

The explosion killed two people and injured 25 more.

The gas line was cut by three Optic Cable Technology LLC employees operating the equipment that struck the line, a previously released report said.

Kong Lee, 61, was killed in the explosion. He was the owner of the Kaffeinate coffee shop in downtown Durham. A Dominion Gas employee injured in the April 10 blast died on April 25.

The explosion was deemed accidental, according to the City of Durham Fire Department’s report.

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