Five Missing In Pittsburg County Gas Well Explosion

Five Missing in Oklahoma Rig Explosion

Pittsburg County Emergency Management says they can't confirm whether anyone has been reported missing, but the emergency management director is at the scene.

Around 9 a.m., the Pittsburg County Sheriff's Department says they were called to an explosion at an oil rig near Quinton.

Officials did not say whether anyone was killed or how many, if any, were injured, but Enloe told KOTV that at least three medical helicopters had landed at the site. Emergency responders found 17 people who were working on the rig but five were still missing.

Seventeen of the 22 people working on the rig when the explosion occurred are accounted for, and five are missing.

Aerial footage showed several fires still burning at the site, and a towering metal structure above the well collapsed onto the ground.

Confirmation of any fatalities won't be possible until the fire is extinguished and investigators can get to the scene of the explosion, said Amy Elliott, a spokeswoman for the Oklahoma medical examiner's office.

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He said he's not sure whether the company was drilling oil or gas, but some media reports describe the incident as a gas well explosion.

Authorities do not yet know the cause of the explosion. The explosion, which happened near the town of Quinton about 140 miles southeast of Oklahoma City, sent black smoke to nearby farmlands.

During a news conference Monday, officials said firefighters are not battling the fire on location, but have crews set up around the area to fight any fires that pop up due to flames.

Sherriff's officials say the fire continues to burn, but it appears to be contained.

Red Mountain Energy LLC out of Oklahoma City is the operator at the Patterson Drilling rig site.

"This one was an actual active drilling rig that was drilling for gas", Enloe said.

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