A natural gas explosion occurred this morning at the Minnehaha Academy in Minneapolis, and two bodies had been removed from the rubble as of 8 PM local time, the Associated Press reports.
The school’s receptionist, Ruth Berg, reportedly died in the blast, and a janitor had been reported missing. Officials hadn’t said if the second body recovered was his, as of this writing.
Minneapolis Assistant Fire Chief Bryan Tyner said three people had been rescued from the building, and nine adults had been transported to a local hospital in connection with the incident. He told the AP that a gas explosion had caused a fire and partial building collapse. Contractors were reportedly working in the building at the time of the explosion.
According to Dr Jim Miner, chief of emergency medicine at the Hennepin County Medical Center, three people were in serious or critical condition following the explosion, and one remained critical as of Wednesday evening. Injuries ranged from head trauma and broken bones to cuts from debris.
Some students were in the building at the time of the explosion, attending summer programs, but school officials said all were safe and had been accounted for.
The school is a Christian college prep school that has students ranging from pre-K to 12th grade.