LOVING — A spokesman for the Eddy County Sheriff’s Office said multiple agencies responded to a pipeline explosion early Wednesday morning near Loving.
Lt. Matt Hutchinson said deputies were called to an area near U.S. Hwy. 285 and New Mexico State Road 31 around 1 a.m.
Hutchinson said the call was in regard to flames in that area, which is densely populated. He said pipeline companies were contacted along with the New Mexico State Police and the Eddy County Emergency Management Office.
Hutchinson said, “safety plans were put in place.”
He said roads and highways in that area were blocked off for a while.
For now, Hutchinson said the cause of the explosion may be mechanical.
“There’s no evidence of any individual to cause the explosion,” he said.
Hutchinson said his office would only be looking at criminal activity, “or things perceived criminal.”
A spokesman for the New Mexico State Police said the New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department is investigating the cause of the explosion.
Carl Christiansen also said that hazardous materials personnel responded as well.
He added that Enterprise Products, the owner of the pipeline will be sending a portion of it to a lab for testing to see which part of the pipeline failed.
Christiansen said the cause of the explosion is still under investigation.
General assignment reporter Mike Smith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 307, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.