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EXPLOSION At Google Data Center, Multiple People Injured…

Three people were brought to the hospital after being critically injured by an “electrical incident” at the Google data center in Council Bluffs, Iowa.

All three electricians were seriously injured and suffered major burns when an electrical “arc flash” explosion occurred and engulfed them, according to the Council Bluffs Police Department.

According to reports, all were flown to nearby Nebraska Medical Center, one by helicopter and the other two by ambulance. All three were reported to be breathing and able to speak.

First responders arrived at the center shortly before noon following initial reports of a “large explosion” now being called an “electrical incident,” according to the Omaha World-Herald.

“It was definitely some sort of electrical issue,” Wood said.

“The full extent of their injuries is unknown; the Council Bluffs Fire Department and Police Department, in addition to the Nebraska Medical Center, don’t have more details to share at this time,” SFgate reported.

Here’s what Google spokesperson Devon Smiley said in a statement:

“We are aware of an electrical incident that took place yesterday at Google’s data center in Council Bluffs, Iowa, injuring three people onsite who are being treated and in stable condition.” 

“The health and safety of all workers is our absolute top priority, and we are working closely with partners and local authorities to thoroughly investigate the situation and provide assistance as needed.”

According to Google, the outage and the incident have nothing to do with each other. The outage of the services would be due to a problem with a software update.

SFgate reported:

Google users worldwide reported a brief outage on Monday that affected Gmail, Maps. and Images search, but Google says that was due to a software update issue, and was unrelated to the arc flash incident in Iowa.

“We’re aware of a software update issue that occurred late this afternoon Pacific Time and briefly affected availability of Google Search and Maps, and we apologize for the inconvenience. We worked to quickly address the issue and our services are now back online,” a spokesperson wrote.

The Council Bluffs facility is among the largest data centers Google operates. The hubs are where Google maintains the servers and pieces of hardware that allow its many services to run 24 hours a day.

The company has 16 data centers in the United States, either operational or under construction. It also operates many abroad, including eight in Europe, seven in Asia, and three in South America.

The Council Bluffs incident occurred on the same day that Google services experienced an unusual outage for many users.

Sources: WLT, SFgate, Omaha

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