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World of Safety: Massachusetts Blast Blamed on Human Error

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A huge explosion that occurred recently in Springfield, MA, resulting in 21 injuries and damage to more than 40 buildings was triggered by human error, according to Massachusetts Fire Marshal Stephen Coan.

Officials said it’s a miracle that no one was killed in the blast in the city of about 150,000 residents.

A utility worker who was investigating a strong natural gas smell in Springfield’s entertainment district inadvertently punctured a high-pressure gas line with a metal probing tool being used to determine whether pockets of natural gas were leaking into the ground.

Markings indicating where the gas line was located were not accurate, according to Coan.

Gas escaped into Scores Gentlemen’s Club and ignited, leveling the building and damaging many others. Fortunately, the club had been evacuated because of the gas smell

The injured include 12 Springfield firefighters, who suffered burns, knee injuries, bruising or concussions from the blast’s impact.

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