PLUM, Pa. (AP) — Authorities say three people are unaccounted for following a house explosion in western Pennsylvania that destroyed three structures and damaged at least a dozen others.
Allegheny County officials said three people were taken to hospitals after the blast that happened shortly before 10:30 a.m. Saturday in the borough of Plum.
County spokesperson Amie Downs said emergency responders reported people trapped under debris after one house apparently exploded and two others were engulfed in flames. Crews from at least 18 fire departments were working to douse the flames with the help of water tankers from Allegheny and Westmoreland counties, Downs said.
George Emanuele, who lives three houses down from the home that exploded, told the Tribune-Review that he and a neighbor went to the home before the fire got out of control and found a man laying in the backyard and dragged him away from the scene.
Jeremy Rogers, who lives two doors down, told the paper that he had been out shopping when he got an alert about a problem at his house and saw “all sorts of stuff flying around.” His family was able to get out safely, and he was allowed to go in quickly to rescue his dog. However, he wasn’t able to get the family’s three cats and hopes they are all right.