Mexican gas pipeline blast caused by outside construction workers

Mexican gas pipeline blast near northern city of Monterrey

Mexican gas pipeline

Mexican gas pipeline explosion caused by construction workers who hit a pipeline while excavating.  Photo courtesy Radio Noticias.

MEXICO CITY – Authorities say a Mexican gas pipeline explosion that killed five people was caused by construction workers who hit a pipeline with excavating machinery.

State oil company Petroleos Mexicanos said late Tuesday the five dead were working on a construction project near the northern city of Monterrey that had nothing to do with Pemex.

The company had originally identified the dead as “subcontractors,” a term often used to refer to private firms that work for Pemex.

The explosion sparked a fire fueled by gas remaining in the pipeline. The company said the fire was burning out.

Gas pipelines in Mexico are often poorly marked, and such accidents are not uncommon. Pipelines in Mexico are also frequently targets of illegal taps drilled by fuel thieves.

The Canadian Press

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