Gas Explosion

A massive pile of debris sits outside of town on Ocracoke Island as cleanup efforts continue a month after Hurricane Dorian. All of the waste must be collected and then loaded into trucks before being transported off the island by boat.
Madeline Gray / For WUNC

As the year comes to a close, we take a look at some of the photos that helped tell the story of 2019. From hurricanes to controversy over confederate monuments and a deadly gas explosion, here are the moments – big and small – that shaped the year in North Carolina news.

A block of North Duke Street remains closed more than two weeks after a gas leak sparked an explosion that killed two and damaged 15 buildings.
Elizabeth Friend / WUNC

The North Carolina Department of Labor has issued more than $21,000 in fines to three companies involved in a deadly natural gas explosion.

The rubble after an explosion destroyed the downtown Durham building.
City of Durham

North Carolina fire investigators have determined that a deadly natural gas explosion in a busy shopping district earlier this year was accidental.

 Demolition crews dismantle the building at 806 N. Duke St., next to the site of the April gas explosion in Durham, N.C.
Elizabeth Friend / WUNC

The landscape of North Duke Street in Durham is slowly starting to change, three months after a deadly gas explosion tore apart a block near downtown.  

Demolition crews have leveled one building next to the site of the explosion at the Kaffeinate coffee shop. That address, 806 West Main Street, is the only one on the block with an active demolition permit, according to city records.

Kong Lee and his children, Diana and Raymond, in a photo posted to the Kaffeinate Instagram.
Kaffeinate

The owner of a coffee shop who died in a gas explosion in Durham will be laid to rest this week.

A block of North Duke Street remains closed more than two weeks after a gas leak sparked an explosion that killed two and damaged 15 buildings.
Elizabeth Friend / WUNC

A memorial service will be held Tuesday for Jay Rambeaut, the gas company worker who died last week of injuries from the April 10 gas leak explosion in Durham.

His sister-in-law Donna Jackson remembered the 51-year-old Creedmoor resident as someone who loved helping his neighbors and spending time with his family.

Nick Knittel

Durham police and fire officials confirmed one fatality from a gas explosion in downtown Durham that destroyed one building and severely damaged four others.