HELENA, Ala. – A major gas pipeline owned by Colonial Pipeline near County Rd. 13 in Helena, exploded injuring several people Monday afternoon.

Plumes of smoke could be seen from miles away as the flames reached high into the air. There is no word yet on what caused the explosion. Several people were injured in the explosion and were transported by helicopter to Birmingham for medical treatment.

According to local media reports, portions of ten acres of woods immediately surrounding the pipeline caught on fire as a result of the explosion.

The Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, along with Shelby County Emergency Management Agency officials, local law enforcement agencies and fire department personnel have been on scene all afternoon.

According to the SCHO, roadways in the area will remain closed to all but local traffic to allow emergency personnel easy access.

“I ask you to join me in praying for those injured, their loved ones, those attending to them, and the brave first responders who gave aid to the injured and are now working to contain the fire,” said Congressman Gary Palmer in a Facebook statement.

In September, Colonial Pipeline was in the news as a pipeline leaked close to the site of the most recent explosion near the Cahaba River.

The state of Alabama has been placed under a “No Burn Ban” since the beginning of October.

Michael Brannon for SylacaugaNews.com | © 2016, SylacaugaNews.com/Marble City Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Michael Brannon is a former news and sports anchor from Mobile, Ala. and serves as Director of Business Development, Manager of Digital Projects and Strategy, and Managing Editor of SylacaugaNews.com.