Underground blasts force evacuations
DES MOINES (AP) — The apparent cause of explosions beneath downtown Des Moines streets is believed to be a short in underground cable wires and not natural gas.
No injuries have been reported. An apartment building and hotel were evacuated as a precaution.
The Des Moines Register reports power would have to be cut to a downtown hotel, a federal government building, the YMCA and the Capital Square office building for about two hours as repairs are made.
Police were called just before 2:45 a.m. today to the area of Fourth Street and Court Avenue by an explosion that blew manhole covers off the street. Another explosion followed about 10 minutes later less than a quarter mile from the first.
Officers reported flames shooting 4 to 5 feet into the air from the second explosion.