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Building materials still burn after a devastating fire
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Fort Worth, Texas – An explosion rocked the Sandman Signature Fort Worth Hotel, also known as the W.T. Waggoner Building, in downtown Fort Worth on Monday afternoon, blowing out at least two floors of the high-rise building and leaving at least 21 people injured. The explosion is under investigation, but ATF suspects it was caused by a natural gas leak.

Texas Hotel Explosion Details and Investigation

The blast occurred at approximately 3:30 p.m. local time at the hotel located at 810 Houston St, Fort Worth, TX 76102. Following the explosion, a two-block area in downtown Fort Worth was cordoned off due to the persistent smell of natural gas, according to officials. The Fort Worth Fire Department is leading the investigation into the incident, and although the cause has not been confirmed, ongoing construction in the building suggests that a gas leak may have triggered the explosion. The ATF, which had agents at the scene, concurred with this assessment.

Search and Rescue Operations Following Possible Gas Leak Explosion

Throughout the night and into the morning, search and rescue operations took place with the assistance of specially trained canines. Fortunately, no additional victims were found during these operations. The Fort Worth Fire Department posted an update on Tuesday morning, stating that the search and rescue efforts had concluded.

Hotel Explosion Injuries and Road Closures

A total of 21 people were injured in the blast, with 20 individuals receiving treatment at the scene or being transported to area hospitals. Among the injured, one person was reported to be in critical condition, four in serious condition, and 14 in minor condition. However, no fatalities have been reported thus far. Several roads in Fort Worth, including Throckmorton St., Houston St., and West 8th St., remain closed as authorities continue their investigation.

Eyewitness Accounts and Community Impact

Eyewitnesses described the immediate aftermath of the explosion, with one resident in a nearby high-rise condo recording the scene of plumes of smoke and debris. Mayra, an employee at the Sandman Hotel, shared her experience of the chaotic evacuation, mentioning the collapse of the stairs in the building. Additional witnesses reported hearing the explosion and seeing debris and smoke emanating from the hotel.

Building History and Restoration Prior to Explosion

The explosion occurred inside the W.T. Waggoner Building, a historic 20-story tower that dates back over a century. The building, which underwent restoration in 1985 to house XTO Energy, was remodeled by Northland Properties in 2019 to become the Sandman Signature Fort Worth Downtown Hotel. The CEO of Northland Properties, Tom Gaglardi, is also the owner of the Dallas Stars hockey team.

Continued Response and Investigation To Determine Liability

Emergency responders, including Atmos Energy and the Texas Railroad Commission, are working diligently to secure the gas supply and inspect the site. Tarrant County Judge Tim O’Hare has directed the closure of downtown county buildings for the day, excluding jails and law enforcement. Texas Governor Greg Abbott has pledged to provide additional personnel and resources to ensure the safety of the local community.

As the investigation progresses, residents and officials alike express the need for a swift determination of the cause to restore confidence in downtown Fort Worth’s safety. The hotel management has issued a statement expressing concern for the injured and their commitment to cooperating with authorities.

The Fort Worth Fire Department and other agencies continue to investigate the incident, aiming to provide answers to the community and prevent similar incidents in the future.

Exploring Gas Leak Explosion Civil Cases: Insights from Gas Leak Explosion Attorney

Attorney Laurence Banville (LB): Welcome, Marc.

Marc Lenahan (ML): Thank you, Laurence. It’s a pleasure to be here and discuss this important topic.

LB: Absolutely, Marc. Let’s start by addressing the victims of gas leak explosions. What options do they have when it comes to pursuing civil cases against those responsible?

ML: Victims injured in gas leak explosions generally have a few avenues to seek justice through civil litigation. First and foremost, they can file a personal injury lawsuit against the parties deemed accountable for the gas leak, such as property owners, maintenance companies, or gas utility companies. This lawsuit aims to recover compensation for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other damages resulting from the incident.

LB: That’s crucial information, Marc. Can you elaborate on the types of evidence that victims should gather to strengthen their case?

ML: Of course, Laurence. Collecting evidence is vital in building a strong case. Victims should thoroughly document the incident by taking photographs or videos of the scene, including any visible damage, as well as injuries sustained. It’s also important to secure any available surveillance footage, witness statements, incident reports, and medical records. These pieces of evidence will help establish liability and demonstrate the extent of the injuries suffered.

LB: Excellent advice, Marc. Now, let’s address the issue of liability. Who can be held accountable in a gas leak explosion case?

ML: Liability can be attributed to various parties, depending on the circumstances of each case. Property owners or landlords have a duty to maintain a safe environment for their tenants or guests. If they fail to address known gas leaks or neglect necessary repairs, they can be held accountable. Additionally, maintenance companies responsible for inspecting and maintaining gas lines or equipment may be liable if their negligence contributed to the explosion. Gas utility companies can also face liability if they were aware of a leak but failed to take appropriate action.

LB: That’s crucial information for our viewers, Marc. Lastly, what advice would you give to victims who are considering pursuing a civil case?

ML: Laurence, my advice is to seek legal counsel as soon as possible. Gas leak explosion cases can be complex, involving intricate legal and technical aspects. An experienced gas leak attorney can provide guidance, evaluate the case’s merits, and help victims navigate the legal process. It’s crucial to act swiftly, as there are statutes of limitations that restrict the time in which a lawsuit can be filed.

LB: Thank you, Marc, for sharing your expertise on this important subject. Your insights will undoubtedly be valuable to those affected by gas leak explosions.

ML: Thank you, Laurence. It was a pleasure to discuss this topic with you and provide information to those in need.

Consultations for Victims of Gas Leak Explosions

If you or your loved ones have been affected by a gas leak explosion, we understand the challenges you may be facing. Seeking legal guidance is crucial in pursuing justice and securing the compensation you deserve. We encourage you to reach out to us for a free consultation with gas leak lawyer Marc Lenahan, Esq. Our experienced team is here to listen, provide support, and guide you through the legal process. Don’t hesitate to take the first step towards justice today.

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