Cleanup Continues after 2 Killed in Blast at Minnehaha Academy

Friday, 04 Aug, 2017

Minnehaha Academy is a Christian private school for preschool through 12th grade. At a news conference Wednesday night, Fruetel did not specify whether Carlson's body was the one located. The company said it was working with fire investigators.

As school workers, students and neighbors gathered by the tennis courts in the northwest corner of campus, some Taher employees waited with tears in their eyes to learn the fate of co-workers.

Minnehaha Academy told its families that the gas leak and explosion affected only its Upper Campus, in a statement on its Facebook page. HCMC tweeted at 9:19 p.m. that they are now treating four people - one is critical and three are in satisfactory condition.

Authorities are on the scene extinguishing the fire and searching for victims.

"John Carlson was Minnehaha's biggest cheerleader and a long-time presence in the school", officials said in the statement. According to the Hennepin County Medical Center, one person remains in critical condition while the other two are in "satisfactory condition".

The victims reportedly suffered injuries ranging from head wounds and broken bones to cuts from debris.

On Wednesday, only some staff members and a few students were there for summer instruction. School building collapse caused by possible natural gas explosion.

Berg, the receptionist who died in the blast, worked for Minnehaha Academy for 17 years, the school said in a Facebook post.

According to Brian Tyner, the assistant chief of administration for the Minneapolis Fire Department, the number of injured people were greatly reduced because it was summertime.

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Flames shoot up as firefighters train water hoses on the scene of a collapsed building following an explosion at Minnehaha Academy in Minneapolis. Right now, though, the focus is on the rescue operations as authorities believe there are several people still trapped under the rubble of the collapsed structure. They later confirmed the death of 47-year-old receptionist Ruth Berg.

One person previously unaccounted for had been found safe and not at the site.

The counselor they were meeting with, Kristin Overton - who is 7 months pregnant - jumped over her desk and took cover, when the windows shattered and the ceiling came down.

"He would hand out Dilly Bars to students after school", she said.

Fire Chief John Fruetel announced late Wednesday that a second body had been pulled from the rubble, but he did not say it was Carlson, who was reported missing. Of the nine, three people remain hospitalized.

Tyner says three people were rescued from the building's roof. One person was evaluated and released.

Principal of the Upper School at Minnehaha Academy Jason Wenschlag tweeted: "Please pray for Minnehaha".

Chopper footage from KSTP shows a fire burning in a completely leveled section of the Minnehaha Academy at 3100 West River Parkway.