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Mishap ignites roof of day care

An electrical worker brushed against a high-voltage power line Tuesday, leaving him seriously injured and dropping a live line across the roof of a day care center, setting it afire.

About 40 children were evacuated, along with about 20 other people from nearby homes. The fire at the day care center was confined to the roof.

Later, as firefighters were putting away their gear, residents complained of a gas leak. Officials were investigating when a house about 500 feet from the day care exploded in flames.

Officials think another electrical line touched the roof of the house and caused a gas line inside "to somehow pop or crack," said Dee Hawkins, Charlotte County Fire and EMS spokeswoman. Gas leaked into the house until it ignited. Although a dog died in the explosion, the fire was put out with no other injuries.

Officials said two employees of a Florida Power & Light subcontractor were transferring power to new poles when one touched a live wire. The current from the 7,600-volt primary line hit him and a coworker.

Both were taken to Lee Memorial Hospital, where they were in serious condition Tuesday night.

_ Wire reports

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