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Update in deadly South Hill house explosion

Post by Stacey Mulick / The News Tribune on April 15, 2008 at 2:18 pm |
April 15, 2008 2:18 pm

I got back a short time ago from the scene of the deadly explosion out in unincorporated Pierce County overnight.

It’s an impressive scene and I definitely get a better sense of the magnitude of the explosion.

The roof is gone. Two cars next to the house are burned out shells. A couple of tall trees next to the house are scorched. Another two sports cars had their windows blown out. They were searched by the bomb squad and have some other damage.

What was amazing is that a big pickup truck in the driveway appears untouched. The windows are intact. I didn’t see a dent on it.

I talked to four neighbors about the sights and sounds overnight.

One said the explosion rattled his garage and shook the windows. He heard several other popping noises and watched some of the fire from his rooftop with his younger brother.

Another man returned home from work to find sheriff’s deputies all over the street. (This was in the minutes before the explosion.) Later, he felt the concussion of an explosion and watched the flames throughout the night.

A man across the street from the house slept through the explosion but spent most of the rest of the night monitoring the activities.

The Householders live right next door. They were hustled out of their house but had to leave their four dogs behind in the house. (The dogs were fine, though quite rattled.)

They spent a portion of the earlier morning hours peering over a neighbor’s fence, watching the bomb squad with binoculars.

“That was really cool,” Lynne Householder said. “It was like Number 5 in real life.” (Making reference to that lovable experimental robot from Short Circuit.)

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