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A natural gas well explosion went mostly unnoticed in Jellico the day after Christmas

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By PETER SAWYER

The day after Christmas, a natural gas explosion in Jellico went unnoticed by many.

At 12:50 p.m. on Dec. 26, there was a gas well explosion near Jellico, according to skytruth.com. Skytruth.com is an online database for tracking incidents that could affect the environment.

“I use that as my database to follow up on spills,” blogger Kim Feil said.

While Jellico dispatch hadn’t heard any reports about it, there was a natural gas explosion behind Indian Mountain State Park, according to Bill Goodwin, director for the Tennessee Oil and Gas Association. The explosion was located on a pipeline owned by Delta Natural Gas, Goodwin said.

Delta Natural Gas spokesperson Gregg Coker hadn’t heard about the incident.

“I’m not familiar with any incident in the area,” he said. “It was probably minor.”

Goodwin speculated the explosion could have been caused by a malfunction in a dehydrator. The flame within the dehydrator could have been sparked by a gas leak.

“It’s usually not a big deal,” Goodwin said. “No one was hurt.”