The Latest: Death toll for Mexico pipeline blast rises to 85

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The latest on the deadly fire at a Mexican fuel pipeline (all times local):

7:20 p.m.

Mexican Health Minister Jorge Alcocer says the death toll from the ghastly pipeline explosion in central Mexico has risen to 85. Fifty-eight others are hospitalized, and dozens more are listed as missing.

Hidalgo state Gov. Omar Fayad adds that nine of the 68 remains found at the site in his state have been identified but it may take months to identify the rest.

The state and federal governments say they are covering medical and funeral costs. One minor with burns has been transferred to Shriners Hospital for Children in Galveston, Texas.

The victims were consumed by flames Friday night as they attempted to cart off gasoline spurting out of a punctured pipeline that belongs to the state-run oil company Petroleos Mexicanos.


8:20 a.m.

Mexican Health Minister Jorge Alcocer says the death toll from an explosion at an illegal pipeline tap has risen to 79, and he says 81 people remain hospitalized.

Alcocer said in an early Sunday news conference that some patients are in serious condition, with burns on more than 80 percent of their bodies and organs compromised following the accident.

More than 600 people were in a field Friday afternoon in the state of Hidalgo when a gusher of gasoline from a damaged pipeline turned into a fireball. Forensic scientists are taking DNA samples from relatives of the missing in an attempt to identify remains, some of which are mere ash and bones.

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