2 Inmates Killed, Dozens Hurt as Jail Building Collapses

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(Photo Credit: Kati Weis/WALA via CNN)

(CNN) — An apparent gas explosion caused part of a county jail in Florida to collapse, killing two inmates and injuring about 100 others.

The explosion took place late Wednesday night at the Escambia County Jail’s central booking area. About 600 prisoners were in the building at the time, the county sheriff’s office said.

Roughly 100 – 150 inmates and correctional officers were hurt, said Kathleen Castro, a spokeswoman for the county. She confirmed the two fatalities.

The inmates who weren’t injured were taken to other detention centers.

By early Thursday, authorities had completed two sweeps of the building. Search and rescue work were ongoing.

Severe weather that swept through the area caused significant flooding in the county Wednesday morning.

Kathleen Castro, a county spokeswoman, said it was too early to say whether the explosion was weather-related.

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