Wednesday, Jul 27, 2016
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Police & Fire

1 killed, 1 injured in Liberty Center home explosion

  • LC-house-explosion

    The scene of a house explosion near Liberty Center, Ohio, in Henry County.

    <THE BLADE/DAVE ZAPOTOSKY
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  • CTY-explosion25p-smoldering

    Firefighters search through debris after an explosion at a home on County Road 9, near County Road S, near Liberty Center.

    <The Blade/Dave Zapotosky
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LC-house-explosion

The scene of a house explosion near Liberty Center, Ohio, in Henry County.

THE BLADE/DAVE ZAPOTOSKY
Enlarge | Buy This Image

LIBERTY CENTER, Ohio -- A man was injured in a house explosion and fire near this Henry County community today, authorities said, and firefighters recently found the body of a second, unidentified victim. 

The victim was initially taken to Henry County Hospital, according to Tracy Busch, director of the Henry County Emergency Management Agency. Property records and neighbors indicate the homeowner and victim is Steven Collins, who was listed today in fair condition at Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center in Toledo. 

PHOTO GALLERY: House explodes near Liberty Center

CTY-explosion25p-smoldering

Firefighters search through debris after an explosion at a home on County Road 9, near County Road S, near Liberty Center.

The Blade/Dave Zapotosky
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The explosion occurred about 7:25 a.m. at the intersection of county roads S and 9 in Liberty Township, according to the Henry County Sheriff's Office and firefighters from four departments -- Liberty Center, Delta, Ridgeville, and Napoleon -- responded to the scene.

There was a school bus filled with children in grades K through 12 stopped just 200 yards from the home that exploded but none of the children were injured. The homes on either side of the destroyed home, which is at S-108 County Rd. 9, were evacuated and do have structural damage, Mr. Busch said.

Shortly after 9:30 a.m., a dozen firefighters were seen combing a field across the street from the destroyed house, with Mr. Busch confirming crews were looking for a woman who was staying at the home. Crews later found a body of the second victim but that person has not been identified.

Today's explosion comes just over a week after a home exploded in Troy Township near Stony Ridge, Ohio, killing two people and injuring three. A leak from a propane tank appears to be the cause of that explosion, but Mr. Busch said it is too early to speculate the cause of the latest explosion. He did say that there were propane tanks on the scene, but everything is still too hot to examine them.

Liberty Center is about 30 miles southwest of Toledo.

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