An explosion and fire at a propane business prompted the evacuation Thursday of Battle Creek, a town of 743 people, according to the Ida County Sheriff's Office.
Jailer Mike Stover said one injury was reported in the 1 p.m. explosion at Johnson Propane Inc. County officials would not immediately release further information.
Authorities quickly blocked the entrances to the city, which is about 40 miles southeast of Sioux City.
Middle and high school students were bused 7 miles to Ida Grove.
Cheryl Andresen, an environmental inspector for Ida County, said she was down the street when there was an explosion from the proplane business which is located on Iowa Highway 175.
"I came outdoors and the smoke was incredible," she said. "All I could see was smoke."
She said she was told to immediately leave town.
"All entrances were barricaded," Anderson said. "They don't want people entering Battle Creek."
Look for more in Saturday's Pilot-Tribune.