Explosion Rocks D.C. Neighborhood

An underground transformer explosion and fire shook a Southwest neighborhood in the nation's capital Monday afternoon, Sept. 22, bringing a large assignment of Washington D.C. firefighters to the scene.

The blaze erupted around 3:15 in the 400 block of Virginia Avenue S.W. It send black smoke and belching flames billowing from a street grate, and caused power outages and stalled elevators in adjacent commercial buildings.

Approximately a dozen companies, including the hazmat and foam units, responded to the scene. Firefighters searched and evacuated adjacent structures, removed civilians trapped in stalled elevators, and protected exposed vehicles. It took the power company several hours to isolate the problem, so that final extinguishment could take place.