Tehran, Iran (CNN) -- Four people were killed Friday by a pipeline explosion in northeast Iran, state-run media reported Saturday.
Ali-Reza Gharibi, the managing director of Iran's Gas Engineering and Development Company, said provincial medical officials told him that relief workers and medical teams are working to determine the cause of the incident and the fatalities, according to the official Islamic Republic News Agency.
Gharibi told IRNA that contractors were connecting a 48-inch (121 centimeter) Turkmenistan gas transfer pipeline to the country's national gas network when the explosion occurred.
Workers lost control of a machine in the operation, which hit another pipeline, IRNA reported, citing Gharibi
Gharibi said it took three hours to put out the fire, which covered an area of 300 meters, or a little less than a third of a mile.
He expects the damaged pipeline to be repaired within the next 48 hours, according to IRNA.