AP NEWS

Two Dead After House Explodes In Dorrance Twp.

May 17, 2019

DORRANCE TWP. — A husband and wife died and their son was hospitalized after a house explosion in Dorrance Twp. early this morning.

The house at 2165 Alberdeen Road was leveled and there was heavy fire when firefighters arrived just after at 1:40 a.m., Dorrance Deputy Chief Jeff Kotarsky said.

One person made it out of the house and was taken to the hospital, state police Fire Marshall Jamison Sgarlat said.

That was a man in his 20’s, according to Dorrance Fire Chief Duane Seltzer. He made his way to Alberdeen Road and was taken to an area trauma hospital.

Emergency personnel recovered a woman from the remains of the home soon after responding and located her husband later that afternoon as they searched for him.

An excavator was brought in around 7:30 a.m. to search through the still smoldering debris for the second victim, Sgarlat said. Charred portions of the house, which is set far back from the road, were scattered in the woods around the house, hanging from trees and thrown into the neighbor’s yard. Pieces of molding landed across Alberdeen Road.

Neighbors reported multiple explosions, Kotarsky said. Sgarlot noted that there were multiple tanks around the property, which was littered with junk.

The cause of the explosion and fire are under investigation but investigators are looking into the possibility of propane causing it, Seltzer said.

Firefighters from Dorrance Twp., Hobbie, Wright Twp., Slocum Twp., Fairview Twp. and Nuangola responded.

“It was a ball of fire. It was actually pretty much leveled after the last explosion,” said Seltzer.

Firefighters arrived and began rolling out hoses to put out the fire in the debris as the last of the explosions erupted, he said. Thankfully they weren’t injured.

“I’m very thankful they weren’t hurt,” Seltzer said.

After putting out the flames, firefighters went to work on a recovery mission to find the victims.

They remained on scene until the afternoon.

Some of the first responders knew the family but they focused on dealing with the task at hand -- the immediate public safety issues, Seltzer said.

“That’s all you can do.”

A family cat is also believed to have perished.

Further information was not released.