Kansas City explosion leaves one person missing, famous restaurant destroyed

WRITTEN BY: Meredith Dobes
The Kansas City explosion created a plume of smoke over the city, pictured here in its normal state, last night.
Image Source: pam_broviak via flickr
The Kansas City explosion created a plume of smoke over the city, pictured here in its normal state, last night.

The Kansas City explosion from yesterday left one person unaccounted for, and efforts to find her continue today.

A prominent Kansas City restaurant had a natural gas explosion Tuesday night which spread to a fire, injuring 14 people. Though the cause of the explosion is still under investigation, the Missouri Gas Energy company released a statement saying that a contractor doing underground work may have struck a natural gas line.

In the aftermath of the Kansas City explosion, cadaver dogs searched the rubble for the missing person, a female restaurant employee, to no avail. The restaurant, J.J.’s Restaurant, is completely destroyed.

The explosion damaged other buildings and apartments nearby. Rescue workers are working today to clear up the nearly four feet of debris covering the ground where the restaurant was.

Witnesses of the Kansas City explosion told NBC they smelled natural gas an hour before the explosion occurred. The Kansas City Fire Department said they will continue to investigate the explosion as the scene is cleared and will continue to look for the missing woman.

J.J.’s Restaurant was upscale and known for having one of the best wine cellars in the world, as listed by The Wine Spectator.

David Frantze, the restaurant owner’s brother, told reporters that the loss of the restaurant has a huge negative impact on Kansas City.

“My brother just spent 27 years of his life running this business,” he said. “He’s built it into one of the fine restaurants in Kansas City. To come down here and to see a hole in the ground in flames is a pretty staggering experience.”

The missing woman continues to be a priority for rescue workers.

“Our main concern right now is that we have a missing individual whose family is very much in anguish about that,” Major Sly James said.

According to rescuers, cadaver dogs will continue to be brought back to the scene as it is cleared.

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