two people They were killed when a steam tube exploded On the campus of the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Connecticut on Friday, officials said.
The blast occurred around 8:20 a.m. in a maintenance building located on Virginia soil, but separate from the medical clinic, according to a hospital spokesperson.
Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont said, “Early indications are that this appears to have been caused by a steam pipe.”
“We received a report this morning of an explosion at the VA Connecticut Healthcare System’s West Haven campus, resulting in the deaths of two people in a non-patient care area,” according to a statement from VA Secretary Robert Wilkie.
“Neither victim was a Virginia patient and patient care was not affected. Emergency personnel are at the site. Our prayers are with the families of the victims of this explosion.”
Medicare was expected to continue in that Virginia, which is located about 75 miles north of Midtown Manhattan and 45 miles south of the Connecticut State Capitol in Hartford.
US Senator Richard Blumenthal, a Democratic senator from Connecticut, told reporters in Washington: “The hospital continues to operate and no hospitalized patient should be affected. It appears that hospital care continues at the same level as always.”
Blumenthal and his colleague in Connecticut, US Senator Chris Murphy, have called for an overhaul, if not outright replacement, for the West Haven campus.
“The Virginia building dates back to the 1950s,” Blumenthal said. “It’s an old, shocking, and outdated building.” “It has a new shell on the outside but it has structural weaknesses.”
Murphy singled out the campus’s heating and air conditioning systems, which he described as “very, very old.”
“Although they made many improvements, this is part of the reason why the entire campus needs to be rebuilt,” said Murphy.
Local fire guards and investigators from the Fire and Explosions Investigation Unit of the State Police responded to Hospital at 950 Campbell Ave. In West Haven, authorities said.
“My thoughts and prayers are with the families of those who lost their lives in the bombing in Virginia,” Senator James Maroney, a Democrat representing West Haven, said in a statement.
“I only have the gratitude and appreciation of the first responders who were available to deal with the situation while we wait to find out the cause of the explosion,” he added.
This is a developing story, please update here for updates.