Crews respond to house explosion in St. Louis Park

ST. LOUIS PARK, Minn. - One woman was injured in a house explosion and fire in St. Louis Park Monday night.

Fire crews were called to a home in the 2900 block of Texa Tonka Avenue just before 7 p.m. When they arrived, the structure was fully engulfed in flames.

"We immediately went on the defensive because there were flames coming from three sides of the home," says St. Louis Park Fire Chief Steve Koering.

Koering says police arrived first to find the homeowner, an elderly woman, already outside the home. She was taken to a hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation. She was the only person inside the home at the time of the fire.

Neighbors say the woman used oxygen tanks, a fact the fire department was able to confirm, but they did not say if that is what caused the explosion.

"CenterPoint Energy has been on scene. They've looked for any sort of gas issues and they found none in the neighborhood or in the house where the fire started," said Koering.

The explosions and fire certainly rocked the quiet of an otherwise normal Monday night.

"I was sitting in my house and I heard two loud explosions," says neighbor Rick Pinkus.

Pinkus lives a mile from the scene, he immediately got in the car to see what happened. He wasn't alone.

"I could see smoke from like a mile away," says Alex Grossman.

Grossman also drove to the neighborhood to investigate. What he saw was firefighters from at least a half-dozen departments trying to put out the blaze.

Considering how quickly the house went up in flames, and what little is left, those who witnessed this say it could have had a much different ending.

"I'm amazed that everyone made it out of there alive," says Pinkus.

The injured woman's family did not want to talk, but did say the family dog was still missing.


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