New Chicago house explosion today: 1 dead after home explosion in Indiana, fire officials say

NEW CHICAGO, Ind. (WLS) — A woman is dead after a house explosion in New Chicago Wednesday, according to fire officials.

Witnesses and neighbors said emergency crews responded to a home following what sounded like an explosion just before noon on 29th Avenue in Indiana near Lake Station.

“I heard an explosion, and I just look outside and I see my neighbor’s house and its all destroyed and demolished and a few seconds later there’s a bunch of smoke and I was going to help but a few seconds after that there was fire,” said neighbor Emiliano Casas.

Casas lives next door to the home on 29th and Decatur, and said before he saw the flames, he heard a terrifying sound.

“It sounded terrifying. I can’t even explain,” he said.

“I thought maybe a tree fall on my house – but when I turned around and looked south, I seen the smoke and the fire up in the air,’ said Allen Mohr, who lives a few blocks away.

Casas ran over to try and help, as well another Good Samaritan, but then he heard a second explosion and said the flames became too intense.

ABC7 obtained cell phone video captured by a neighbor in the area who initially tried to help before the flames became too overpowering.

“I was nervous scared and afraid because I was worried that the next house or my own house come down as well,” Casa said.

“We did a defensive attack because there was no way that we can do an interior attack with that much fire and that much smoke,” said Chief Evin Eakins Jrm with the New Chicago Fire Department.

Neighbor Joshua Pollard said he knew the victim and described her as a comforting presence in the area.

“She just opened up her heart and had a big smile all the time,” Pollard said.

Utility company, NIP-SCO said it was aware of the incident and assisted with first responders to secure the area.

The company also released a statement that said in part, “Our preliminary investigation of the scene indicates that NIPSCO facilities were not involved. Further inquiries should be directed to Lake Station Fire and Rescue.”

Investigators have yet to reveal the cause of the explosion but said at this point, investigators are looking into the possibility of a natural gas explosion.

“The neighbors said they were smelling gas in the area and so we’re coming into some time of conclusion that it was possibly a natural gas leak,” said Chief Evin Eakins Jr, with the Town of New Chicago Fire Department.

Neighbors told ABC7 that they reported smelling gas in the area as far back as two weeks ago.

The woman who died has not yet been identified, although neighbors that knew her call her a loss a tragedy.

New Chicago’s fire chief said the state Fire Marshal is assisting in this investigation.

Copyright © 2022 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.

You May Also Like
Landslide kills 1, leaves up to a dozen missing on Italy's resort island of Ischia

Landslide kills 1, leaves up to a dozen missing on Italy’s resort island of Ischia

Rescuers walk past damaged vehicles after heavy rainfall triggered landslides that collapsed…
Judge denies bid for new trial in Whitmer kidnapping case

Judge denies bid for new trial in Whitmer kidnapping case

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – A federal judge has denied a new trial…
High gas prices and the Inflation Reduction Act's green subsidies are leaving many Europeans to wonder whether or not the U.S. is still an ally

EU accuses US of PROFITEERING from Ukraine war by selling higher price gas and weapons 

The EU has accused the US of profiteering from the Ukraine war…
Alabama defeats Auburn in Iron Bowl 49-27

Alabama defeats Auburn in Iron Bowl 49-27

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (WIAT) — Alabama football took on the Auburn Tigers in…
St. Johns River glows bright with Jacksonville Light Boat Parade

St. Johns River glows bright with Jacksonville Light Boat Parade

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Despite concerns about possible rain, boaters lit up the…
A room with a view: Teresa Giudice, 50, opted for Paris chic as she posed near the Eiffel Tower in new Instagram snaps she shared onto her main Instagram page

Teresa Giudice is Paris chic as she poses near the Eiffel Tour amid her trip abroad with Luis Ruelas

Teresa Giudice dressed to impress during her romantic getaway to Paris with…
In staged propaganda, Vladimir Putin held a sham meeting of women posing as wives and mothers of Russian servicemen yesterday

Putin will get his Russian security service goons to gag outspoken mothers and wives

Vladimir Putin is using the Russian security service to gag mothers and…
Fight over soccer game at Gold Coast Social spills onto W Division Street; 3 hurt, including police officer

Fight over soccer game at Gold Coast Social spills onto W Division Street; 3 hurt, including police officer

Police said 5 people are being questioned ByABC7 Chicago Digital Team via…