Six people, including five firefighters, were injured in a house explosion Sunday in the south-central Iowa town of Centerville. Centerville Police Chief Tom Demry says the home in the 1200 block of Drake Avenue caught fire just before 9 a.m. The explosion happened about 40 minutes later.
Demry says the injured firefighters were in the home at the time. “In total, there were four Centerville firefighters injured,” Demry told Radio Iowa. “There was one Mystic, Iowa firefighter…he wasn’t there with the fire department, he just stopped by to see if he could help. And then a private citizen was injured as well.”
All six of the injured individuals are expected to make a full recovery. Three of the Centerville firefighters were taken to a hospital in Des Moines. Demry expects two of them will be released today. The other Centerville firefighter was treated and released from a local hospital Sunday.
The Mystic firefighter and the private citizen were taken to University Hospitals in Iowa City. Both were treated and released for burns. The Iowa State Fire Marshal’s office and an Alliant Energy crew are investigating the fire.
Demry says it appears a nearby transformer blew just prior to the fire. “We’re assuming that’s the original start of the chain reaction that led to the explosion,” Demry said. An elderly woman who lives alone in the home was not there at the time of the fire.