New York House Explosion Injures Eight

Four other people were killed in the blast

 

 
 
 

CHRIS CAROLA, Associated Press | | Thursday, July 14, 2011


SALEM, N.Y. (AP) — An explosion leveled a two-family home in upstate New York Wednesday afternoon, blowing debris hundreds of feet and killing four people, police said.

Eight others were injured, including a baby. Three of the dead were adults, said State Police Lt. John Agresta. The age of the fourth person, who died later in the day, was not immediately known late Wednesday.

The blast shook tiny Salem, about 40 miles northeast of the state capital of Albany.

"It sounded like a hundred sticks of dynamite going off," said Josh Nelson of Salem, who was several miles away.

The blast shook a restaurant a half-mile away, restaurant employee Diane Keys told the Glens Falls Post-Star newspaper.

Neighbor Joseph Brandmeyer ran to the home after hearing the explosion to find pieces of furniture, board and other debris scattered around the yard and road and in trees. He said he saw at least three bodies under tarps.

Brandmeyer said he was helping a woman out of the rubble when he saw spotted her limp baby under a board.

"I started to talk to her and she started to breathe," Brandmeyer said of the baby. "Pray to God she's OK."

It wasn't clear what caused the blast. Brandmeyer overheard one survivor, the man who rented the home, saying he had called his landlord about a propane leak earlier in the day.

Nelson, a construction worker, said he was familiar with the large two-story home. He said debris including two-by-six boards and children's schoolwork was blown into a cornfield across the road.

The force of the blast obliterated the house, sending wood and shingles across the road onto a neighbor's property. Debris was strewn several feet deep across the road while pink insulation hung in the branches of a pine tree in front of the flattened house. A mattress and part of a sofa lay in the road and a car with its hood blown open sat on the property. Cinderblocks were thrown 50 yards onto a neighbor's yard. The blast buckled the doors on the garage of the house across the road.

Firefighters continued to douse the smoldering pile of wreckage in the late afternoon while investigators took photos of the site.

Salem, a rural town known for its scenic covered bridges, museums, handsome period homes and historic landmarks from Revolutionary War days, is on the Vermont border southeast of Lake George. The house was on a road of widely spaced homes separated by farmland.

John Buckley, who lives less than 200 yards from the explosion scene, said he was watching television when the blast shook his house.

"I heard one great big boom," he said. "I came out and all I saw was a cloud of smoke and a little bit of fire and that was it."

Buckley said the family had moved into the house earlier this year but he didn't know them very well.



Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: News, blast injuries

 
What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox

 

Fire EMS Blogs


Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts

 

EMS Airway Clinic

Mechanical CPR is Producing Resuscitation Results Beyond Expectations

Discover why clinical studies are finding mechanical CPR just as effective as optimally-performed CPR.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

New Technology Helps Missouri Ambulances

Strategic GPS tracking helps in Springfield.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Profile: Hospital Wing Air Ambulance

Take a look inside this Memphis service.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

New Monitors for Wyoming EMS

Grant helps Torrington EMS get new equipment.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

London Medics Increasingly Attacked

One medic describes her violent confrontation.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Violence, Arson in Ferguson

Crowds in Ferguson and elsewhere react to decision.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

California Bus Rollover

One killed and dozens injured.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

Buffalo Residents Dig Out and Prepare for Flooding

Flooding expected as heavy snow melts.
More >


Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >


Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >


More Product Videos >