By Sharon Bernstein SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Reuters) - A construction crew on Friday accidentally ruptured a natural gas transmission line in Fresno, California, sparking an explosion and fire that injured up to 15 people, four of them critically, officials said. The 12-inch (30-cm) pipeline, belonging to Pacific Gas & Electric Corp , was struck by a backhoe near state Highway 99, unleashing a fireball that injured members of the construction team and a jail inmate crew nearby, Fresno Fire Department spokesman Peter Martinez said. One worker in critical condition was flown to hospital by helicopter, and 13 or 14 others were taken to hospitals for evaluation and treatment of injuries after the pipeline was ruptured at about 2:30 p.m., Martinez added. Four of the injured were taken to Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno, and two more were taken to the burn unit there, said hospital spokeswoman Mary Lisa Russell, adding that four were in critical condition and two serious.
TORONTO (AP) — Before the late Robin Williams enthralled television audiences on "Mork and Mindy," he already was a star on the 1970s stand-up comedy circuit — and by the '80s was a leading light for a new stand-up generation.
Tanzanian woman wins landmark case over childbirth operation
By Kizito Makoye DAR ES SALAAM (Thomson Reuters Foundation) - A woman left unable to have children after a defective caesarian section operation in Tanzania has won a landmark case against a local hospital whose surgeon left a piece of cloth inside her. Mwamini Adam and her husband filed a lawsuit at the high court in western Tabora region against Urambo District Council's hospital four years ago, demanding 500 million Tanzanian Shillings ($265,000) for physical and emotional distress. Adam, 37, accused Jacob Kamanda, a gynecologist and obstetrician at the district hospital, of professional negligence and misconduct after he left a piece of cloth in her stomach after performing a caesarian section operation. She said the defective operation meant she can no longer give birth because doctors performing a life-saving corrective operation decided to remove her uterus.
Texas House approves bill that limits city bans on fracking
By Marice Richter DALLAS (Reuters) - A bill that would stop Texas cities from enacting their own bans on hydraulic fracturing in the nation's top crude oil and natural gas producing state was approved on Friday in the state House of Representatives. The bill bars cities from overly regulating the industry, targeting a ban on fracking, a method of extracting oil and gas that uses high pressure, adopted by voters in Denton, Texas, a college town about 30 miles (50 km) north of Dallas. Representatives voted 122-18 to advance the bill. The Texas Senate has yet to vote on a similar bill.
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