See the scene of gas leak explosion in Murrieta, California
An explosion Monday that killed one and injured 15 may have been avoidable, California utility officials say.
Records show a contractor at the home in Murrieta, between Los Angeles and San Diego, failed to call 811 to have underground utility lines marked before starting work, the Los Angeles Times reported.
“No matter what you’re doing, if you’re digging, please call 811,” said Cedric Williams of Southern California Gas Co., according to the publication. “Not calling 811 makes it dangerous for everyone.”
The home exploded just past noon after utility workers and firefighters responded to reports of a damaged gas line, NBC News reported. A utility worker died and 15 others, including three firefighters, suffered injuries.
The blast destroyed the house and hurled one person across the street into a parked trailer, The Riverside Press-Enterprise reported.
Four other homes in the neighborhood are uninhabitable, while two have moderate damage, according to the publication.
The national 811 number routes callers to a call center in their state. Homeowners and contractors in some states also are able to submit tickets online.
The service alerts utility companies and public agencies to mark underground lines, such as gas lines, where digging will be performed.