1 dead in explosion at Newfane home

Published: Nov. 18, 2022 at 10:15 AM EST
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NEWFANE Vt. (WCAX) - Authorities say one man is dead following an apparent explosion at a home in Newfane early Friday.

The Vermont State Police say it happened around 1 a.m. at a home on Route 30. Troopers and numerous fire crews responded after multiple 911 calls reporting the explosion. Officials say the home was completely destroyed and that a man’s body was found in the debris.

There was no immediate word on the cause or the identity of the victim. Fire crews and investigators remain on the scene.

According to witnesses, a little after 1 a.m., an explosion engulfed the home in flames. The Vermont State Police say one person inside was unable to make it out.

“I actually thought a part of my house had collapsed,” said Valorie Pennington, who was watching TV when the explosion caused her to rush to her front door. “I just saw a ball of flames. It just shot straight up into the air.”

A pile of charred wood, a car, and other debris were all that was left of her neighbor’s property. “The power lines caught on fire. You could see the fire going down the cables,” Pennington said.

Police say one person was found dead inside the home when first responders arrived on the scene. The victim’s body was sent to the chief medical examiner’s office for identification and to determine the cause of death.

“Each individual car that he had parked there just blew up. So, every five minutes you would hear boom, boom. boom.” Pennington said.

The force of the blast appeared to send a portion of the roof or exterior wall to the river bank below the foundation.

“From what I understand, a piece of the house actually flew over to the neighbor across the street,” Pennington said.

The investigation into the exact cause of the explosion and fire is continuing.