2 dead after farm equipment triggers natural gas explosion in northern IL

Two men died and two were injured in an explosion and fire caused by the rupture of a natural gas pipeline Tuesday morning northeast of the intersection of state Route 38 and Nachusa Road east of Dixon. The men were laying field tile when a tractor hit

Two men died and two were injured in an explosion and fire caused by the rupture of a natural gas pipeline Tuesday morning northeast of the intersection of state Route 38 and Nachusa Road east of Dixon. The men were laying field tile when a tractor hit

Authorities in northern IL say two people were killed and two others seriously injured in a natural gas pipeline explosion. 38 leading to a large fire.

The two men died at the scene; the other two were taken by nearby residents to KSB Hospital then transferred to OSF St. Anthony Medical Center in Rockford, where one is in critical condition, and the other is in what Simonton characterized as stable condition.

A large fire, possibly caused by a pipeline explosion, has emergency personnel responding to a scene near Dixon. Workers used a second tractor to try to free the first but lost traction when the pipeline exploded.

The names of the victims have not yet been released.

The area is secure and safe, and there were no evacuations, although IL 38 was blocked for a time. The men were laying field tile when a tractor hit the 20-inch pipe. Because the pipeline is federally regulated, the NTSB will assist in the investigation.

The explosion, which occurred at about 9 a.m. Tuesday, started a massive fire in the area.

County officials say a natural gas line was "compromised", creating the explosion.

Dental records will be needed to make positive identifications, Lee County Coroner Jesse Partington said.

A gas company is there making sure the gas line is now safe.

The Illinois State Fire Marshal's Office sent investigators to the scene.

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