1. #1
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    Post Torrance, CA Home Explosion

    TORRANCE, Calif. (AP) - A total of 115 homes and apartments were
    damaged when a home tented for termite fumigation filled with
    natural gas exploded, showering the neighborhood with debris, fire
    officials said.
    Damage from the blast early Tuesday ranged from broken windows
    to collapsed ceilings, said Tad Friedman, a spokesman for the
    Torrance Fire Department. The cost of the damage had not been
    determined.
    Despite the force of the explosion, only 10 people had minor
    injuries.
    "I felt the blast at my home two miles away," Friedman said.
    "I knew it would be miraculous if there were no fatalities."
    A witness told fire investigators on Wednesday that the blast
    sent a bright orange, mushroom-shaped fireball into the sky and was
    followed by several more explosive flashes with a greenish tint.
    Debris was found as far as 100 yards away.
    The City Council declare a state of emergency for the beachside
    community and set aside $85,000 for cleanup. Torrance is about 20
    miles south of Los Angeles.
    One of the damaged homes belonged to John Williams, who watched
    Wednesday as a steady stream of engineers, utility workers and
    insurance adjusters made their way through his home across the
    street from the scene of the explosion.
    The blast shattered many of the windows in the home Williams
    shares with his wife and two adult sons. It also blew off the front
    door and brought the ceiling of one bedroom crashing down.
    "We've all been outside today wandering up and down the road,"
    he said. "It's amazing the way people are taking it. It's like,
    OK, we had a problem, let's go fix it. We're all lucky that nobody
    was really seriously hurt."
    An initial inspection indicated that Williams' home had no
    serious structural damage. However, it will be several days before
    his family can move back in because the utilities were knocked out
    and must be repaired.
    Along with many of his neighbors, Williams and his family are
    staying at a local motel.
    Meanwhile, investigators with the Fire Department and The Gas
    Co. sought to determine how the home filled with gas. An official
    with The Gas Co. said it appeared there was a crack in a pipe that
    fed natural gas into the home. But it was unclear how or when the
    crack occurred.
    "We were at the home two days prior and there was no evidence
    of a crack or any indication to the meter reader that there was a
    problem," said Peter Hidalgo, a spokesman for The Gas Co.
    Friedman said the gas may have been ignited by fans used during
    the fumigation or by other electrical devices. The chemical used
    for the fumigation was sulfuryl fluoride, which is commonly known
    as Vikane and is not flammable, he said.
    A total of 33 homes were damaged in Torrance, including the one
    that was destroyed. Another 82 homes and apartments were damaged in
    nearby Redondo Beach.
    The owners of the home where the blast occurred, identified
    through property records as Robert and Helen Mimura, were not there
    at the time and could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.
    The home was being fumigated by El Redondo Termite Control of
    Gardena. Leo Grizzaffi, an attorney for El Redondo, has said
    company officials were trying to determine what had happened.
    He said the work at the home was being done by a subcontractor,
    Network Fumigation and Exterminating Co. Inc. of Anaheim. A call
    placed to Network was answered by someone who said the firm had no
    comment.

    (Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press
    Proudly serving as the IACOJ Minister of Information & Propoganda!
    Be Safe! Lookouts-Awareness-Communications-Escape Routes-Safety Zones

    *Gathering Crust Since 1968*
    On the web at www.section2wildfire.com

  2. #2
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    Default ???

    Do you think the termites are gone??? How sad for the family, but lucky that no one was seriously hurt.
    Last edited by Myfireangel; 05-04-2010 at 06:22 AM. Reason: correction

  3. #3
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    Hhmmmm... an 8 year old thread dug up by two new members with the same link to an equity inspector? Reported.

    On another note, thought this was new at first and was thinking this same thing happened about 10 years ago in that area. But it was the same one. I believe it was found that the natural gas wasn't shut off completely and then an appliance (fridge?) cycled on and ignited everything.

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