In Gulfport, Mississippi, a family’s home suddenly exploded, causing a blast that was heard for miles. Investigators couldn’t determine a cause for the spontaneous combustion, until they started sifting through the rubble. In the mess of what remained, they made a stunning discovery and found an unlikely answer for this devastation.
The family’s home on Tandy Drive is uninhabitable. Luckily, nobody was home on Wednesday when the blast tore up the west side of the house. Investigators couldn’t immediately conclude how this happened, until days later when they got their very unlikely answer.
When the residents left for the day, the family dog was locked up inside the house, like he is every afternoon when everyone leaves to go about their business. As the family pet roamed about the home, he casually walked through the laundry room, where investigators believe that his collar got caught on the gas valve, pulling it from the off position and causing gas to begin leaking out. It was made worse by what else was nearby, which caused a horrific incident that could happen to anyone with meandering pets.
According to WLOX, gas from the valve that the dog accidentally opened seeped into the vent it was near, allowing the fumes to creep up into the attic. The gas became trapped up in that small space, creating a bomb out of the attic when either the furnace or water heater kicked on. Gulfport’s fire chief believes that it was one of those units that became the ignition source, resulting in an explosion that decimated a substantial part of the family’s house.
The valve that’s positioned on the wall at the exact height of the puppy’s collar was exposed, but it was turned off after the family disconnected their gas dryer from it to replace with an electric dryer. Despite being displaced, the mother and her three kids who live there are happy to be alive, which is all thanks to timing. Had the explosion happened just a day earlier, everyone would have been home and likely not survived the blast.
It’s not a coincidence that this family was spared total tragedy, when this could have happened at any time after disconnecting the dryer, but it happened when nobody was around to be hurt. They may not have their house and most of the belongings inside of it, but they still have each other. That’s the most important thing they need to rebuild.