State Fire Marshal Stephan Coan says a gas company worker responding to reports of a natural gas leak in Springield punctured a pipe and an unknown spark ignited a massive explosion that injured 18 people. Columbia Gas Company official Steven Bryant.

Friday's explosion damaged more than 40 buildings. Some officials called it a miracle that no one was killed.  Most of the injured were part of a group of gas workers, firefighters and police officers who ducked for cover behind a utility truck just before the blast.