Skip to main content

Feds investigating whether gas meter move caused explosion

Two staff members died in the blast, and one remains in a critical condition.

Federal investigators say they have preliminary information that Wednesday's explosion at Minnehaha Academy happened in the course of moving a gas meter. 

But the National Transportation Safety Board says it will begin its official investigation into the cause on Friday. 

NTSB spokesman Christopher Hart told reporters at a Minneapolis news conference Thursday: "Our mission is to understand not only what happened but why, so we can prevent this from happening again." 

Hart said investigators will begin their work Friday and expect to be on the scene for five to seven days. But completing a final report on the explosion's cause is a process that typically takes about a year, he said. 

The NTSB has not yet been in touch with the contractor that was working on a gas line and meter when the explosion occurred, Hart said, but added that they'll contact Master Mechanical on Friday.

The NTSB is the federal agency that regulates gas pipelines.

One staff member remains critically injured

The explosion and building collapse at the school's Upper Campus killed two staff members. Another remains hospitalized in critical condition. 

Minnehaha Academy said in a statement Thursday it's praying for the healing of Bryan Duffey and his family. 

Duffey is an assistant soccer coach at the school, FOX 9 reports, and his family said Thursday his traumatic injuries will require more surgery, but they've seen a lot of progress in his condition. 

Rebuilding fund created

Minnehaha Academy is a private Christian school in Minneapolis that serves children from pre-school through 12th grade. 

An alum of the school started a fundraising campaign to pay for rebuilding the Upper Campus, which serves 9th through 12th graders. 

The message on the GoFundMe page reads in part: 

"The rich Christian tradition of Minnehaha Academy and all that it stands for means so much to so many of us. Let us all now stand shoulder to shoulder with the families of the victims, offer them our fervent prayers and support, and band together to build an even better Minnehaha Academy for current students and generations to come." 

Next Up


Watch: Storm updates after heavy hail slams Twin Cities

Sven Sundgaard is providing an update after Thursday's flash hail storm.

kim crockett facebook sos

MN GOP apologizes over antisemitic sequence in candidate's campaign video

Party leader says candidate didn't know the imagery perpetuated an antisemitic trope.

storm, severe

Tornado, severe thunderstorm watches issued in Minnesota

In addition to possible tornadoes, there is a threat for damaging winds and very large hail.

House sale keys door

High prices, stiff competition putting off homebuyers in Twin Cities

Prices continue to rise in the metro, but there are signs of buyer fatigue.

Screen Shot 2022-05-19 at 1.59.51 PM

Series of explosions at manufacturing plant injures 6 in Wisconsin

The blast rocked the Wisconsin town just before 7:45 a.m.

police lights squad car dark - Unsplash

Medford man dies in Le Sueur County crash

The 49-year-old was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of the crash.

Denisovan molar

MN researcher part of team behind 'revolutionary' discovery of ancient tooth in Laos

The molar found in a remote cave is believed to have belonged to a Denisovan girl who lived 164,000-130,000 years ago.

Eagle Ridge Middle School

Charges: Sting catches MN principal trying to hire child prostitute

Authorities alleged Mohamed Selim attempted to meet a 15-year-old girl for sex on Tuesday.

cub donuts 1

Nominate a 'local hero' to get a dozen Cub donuts from Salvation Army

The organization is looking for 1,000 volunteers to help with the effort in the metro.

Minnesota State Patrol helicopter windshield broken after duck flies through it.

Duck smashes through chopper window and hits State Patrol pilot

Two pilots were on the aircraft at the time, with one of them sustaining a head injury.

covid, vaccine

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Thursday, May 19

It's been 805 days since the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in Minnesota on March 5, 2020.


Two weeks after the explosion, Minnehaha Academy comes together

The Walk for Unity drew students, staff, and supporters

Minnehaha soccer coach has leg amputated after school explosion

Bryan Duffey was in a critical condition, but is now recovering.

Lawsuit blames gas line workers for deadly Minnehaha Academy explosion

The suit claims the workers ran to save themselves instead of warning people about the leak.

NTSB reveals probable cause of fatal gas explosion at Minnehaha Academy

Workers thought that a gas valve was closed, when it was actually open.

Tributes continue to pour in for beloved school staffers killed in explosion

A GoFundMe account has been set up to help the families of Ruth Berg and John Carlson.

A year since devastating explosion, a new start for Minnehaha Academy

The school held a ceremonial pillar raising on Thursday morning.

Gas leak, cigarette possibly caused house explosion

A neighbor rushed to the aid of a family whose house exploded in Tracy over the weekend, charging into the burning home to save a baby. The mother and three daughters who lived there were badly injured. Neighbors said the woman told them she had lit a cigarette prior to the blast.