Fire Department expected to release report into JJ’s Restaurant explosion

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- The Kansas City Fire Department is expected to finish its report regarding the Feb. 19 gas explosion at JJ's Restaurant that killed one and injured 15 others.

One question remains: should the Kansas City Fire Department have issued an evacuation? According to Kansas City, Mo., city policy, yes.

The city's evacuation plan, adopted in 2008, states the Fire Department Incident Commander is responsible for calling all evacuations for minor hazardous material situations and minor threats of explosions.

The plan states in part: "The decision to conduct minor/routine evacuations and operational command are the responsibility of the field IC (typically the senior KCFD or KCPD officer). Minor/routine evacuations are common, and generally conducted in support of fire or police operations, such as structure fires, minor hazardous materials incidents, and minor threats from explosion..."

In a news conference last week, Kansas City Mayor Sly James said it was too early to play the blame game and that the incident was still under investigation.

"Fire does not do gas," he said. "Missouri Gas and Energy does gas."

Kansas City Fire Chief Paul Berardi said in a news conference last week that the fire department handed the scene over to Missouri Gas and Energy. Minutes before the explosion, employees at JJ’s Restaurant and MGE were in the process of evacuating the building.

We will have more on the fire department's report later this morning. Refresh this page for updates or watch our live stream.


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