An emergency official said that five people are missing after a fiery explosion took place in an eastern Oklahoma drilling rig Monday morning, sending plumes of black smoke into the air and leaving a derrick crumpled on the ground.
At least three medical helicopters landed at the site after the explosion.
The explosion occurred west of the town of Quinton, about 100 miles southeast of Tulsa. Aerial footage from midday Monday showed several fires still burning at the site and the derrick- a towering metal structure above the well, fell to the ground.
Keli Cain, spokeswoman of Oklahoma Office of Emergency Management said she could not confirm immediately any fatalities or injuries from the accident.
Cain also shared that state environmental and regulatory officials have been informed of the incident, and representatives are on their way to the scene. A local emergency dispatcher said that the sheriff, undersheriff and county management director are all on the scene already.
Oklahoma City-based Red Mountain Energy is behind the drilling site operations. The said information was given by Matt Skinner, a spokesman for the Oklahoma Corporation Commission which regulates oil and gas operations. Red Mountain, however, has yet to issue a statement on the matter, or respond to inquiries.
A company that specializes in rig fires and other well control problems also responded to the blaze.
The identities of the five missing people from the explosion have yet to be released by the authorities.