Los Angeles, CA Gas Explosion, Jun 1976


Los Angeles (UPI) - The death toll from a gasoline line explosion that destroyed a city block rose to four early today with the deaths of two sisters.
Seventeen other persons were burned and three were missing.
MRS. MAE WOODS, 71, died at County-USC Medical Center from burns she suffered in the explosion and fire Wednesday. Her sister, MRS. CLARA DROWNE, 53, of Phoenix, Ariz., died in the same hospital earlier.
The husbands of the two women were among the injured.
ELLABETH AVILA, 70, and CORA LINDLOFF, 92, died in the fire and explosion.
A street widening crew's excavating
machine accidentally ripped apart a buried Standard Oil pipeline, sending 16,000 gallons of gasoline under 600 pounds per square inch pressure fountaining high above the street.
It vaporized into a gasoline fog, and for about 90 seconds the 9500 block of Venice Boulevard in Palms was like the inside of an auto engine's combustion chamber just before the spark plug fires.
With a mighty whoosh, the cloud blossomed into a fireball, demolishing seven buildings and setting dozens of men and women afire.

Idaho Free Press Nampa Idaho 1976-06-17