Apparent Natural Gas Explosion in Denver Injures 9

August 16, 2018

Nine people were injured, one critically, by an apparent natural gas explosion in Denver on Aug. 14, firefighters said.

Capt. Greg Pixley, a spokesman for the Denver Fire Department, said seven bystanders were treated for minor injuries and released after a portion of a brick rowhouse was leveled in the blast just south of downtown. A man was critically injured, and a woman who was pulled from the debris is in stable condition.

Pixley said some of the injured were burned, and the fire department is working with Xcel Energy to determine what happened.

Pieces of wood were thrown like sticks, and bricks were spilled on the ground in front of the one-story building, which was searched by a cadaver dog.

“Our goal is not to find a victim but to rule out that a victim is there,” Pixley said shortly after the explosion.

The fire department tweeted Tuesday night that no additional victims were found.

Alexander Ponton, whose car was hit by the blast, said he and a few other people helped pull a couple from the debris.

“As I got in front of that building, it blew up right next to my car,” he said. “Threw my car over a foot and a half to 2 feet. … After it blew up, all you could smell was gas. That’s all you could smell.”

Alex McMahill, who was working at a nearby auto repair shop, said he heard the explosion and thought a vehicle had fallen from its lift.

“I just started running,” said McMahill, who also helped pull people from the debris.

“I’m thankful for my friends, my family, and I hope that everybody could be safe because it’s a crazy life,” he said.

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