Home levelled, 1 person dead after home explosion in Mississauga, Ont.
One person is dead after an explosion levelled a house in Mississauga, Ont., and damaged 24 others.
The cause of the blast that left nine people injured is still unknown. A fire official said gas is a concern for homes in the immediate area, but it is too early to speculate on what led to the explosion that occurred about 4:20 p.m. ET on Hickory Drive, near Dixie Road and Rathburn Road East.
Belma Colakovic, who lives in a townhouse complex known as Hickory Village, about 10 houses away from where the explosion occurred, said she was at a nearby Tim Hortons when it happened.
“All of a sudden we feel the ground shake and the windows move and the doors open and close. At first we thought it was a really bad earthquake, and then we looked up outside, and we saw that there was a huge cloud of smoke everywhere,” Colakovic said.
On her walk home, the roads were blocked by police.
“There was just wood on the street … scattered all over the place,” she said.
She said she knows one of families in the houses affected by the explosion and is trying to contact them to find out if they’re OK.
“We’re just praying for all those families and really hoping that they weren’t home.”
Toronto Emergency Services said one person was pronounced dead at the scene and nine people were treated for injuries, mostly cuts and bruises.
Police have evacuated the area and 50 to 100 people have been forced to leave their homes. A reception area has been set up at Burnhamthorpe Community Centre.
“We will be there to welcome you and make sure that you have at least a dry place to stay,” said Tim Beckett, chief of Mississauga Fire and Emergency Services.
Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie said emergency officials are working to secure the scene. She said six homes received moderate to heavy damage.
Firefighters are still searching the affected homes and trying to contain hazards.
Area residents have been sharing photos and video of the explosion scene on social media.
Police are asking people to avoid the area near Dixie Road and Rathburn Road East.
Garrett Brazzier was driving east on Rathburn Road East crossing over Hickory Drive when he stopped at the light at Dixie and Rathburn.
“I heard a loud bang, like a super-loud bang. It sounded like a bomb went off, almost. I looked in my rearview mirror and there was debris flying everywhere. There was a huge dust cloud,” he said.