Elk City Daily News, Larissa Graham, Associated Press
OKLAHOMA CITY — An explosion at a trucking company sent thick, black smoke billowing into the skies southwest of Elk City on Saturday and left two employees injured.
Beckham County Emergency Management Director Lonnie Risenhoover said it wasn't immediately clear what caused the blast at Hodges Trucking Company, LLC, other than there was some kind of spark. He said investigators would need to interview the two people working when the explosion happened.
The workers, whose names were not released, were taken to hospitals. Risenhoover said one was flown to Oklahoma City, while the other was treated at an Elk City hospital. He did not know their conditions.
The explosion caused a fire, which firefighters had under control, Risenhoover said. He said firefighters remained on the scene Saturday afternoon to make sure it did not reignite.
Hodges Trucking is an affiliate of Oklahoma City-based Chesapeake Energy, according to the company's website, which said it provides trucking, cranes and maintenance services for the oilfield industry.
A Chesapeake spokesman said in an email to The Associated Press that the company was gathering information on the blast and would comment later Saturday.
A phone call to Hodges Trucking rang unanswered Saturday.
Larissa Graham, a reporter with The Elk City Daily News, said the explosion could be felt at the newspaper office, about three miles "as the crow flies" from the site of the explosion.
Roads were closed within about a one mile radius of the company and about 100 homes and businesses within the area were evacuated as a precaution. Residents were allowed to return Saturday afternoon, Risenhoover said.
An Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management spokeswoman said she was aware of the explosion but said state assistance had not been requested.
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