GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - Blame the dog. That's the conclusion fire investigators have reached regarding Wednesday's gas explosion at a home on Tandy Drive in Gulfport. Luckily no one was home at the time, and the pets were all safe, but the blast left the west side of the house in ruins.
According to Gulfport's fire chief, the puppy's collar somehow got hooked on a gas valve in the laundry room. The valve opened. Gas leaked out, seeped into a vent, and flowed into the attic. Once trapped in that confined space, fire investigators believe either the furnace or the water heater kicked on. One of those units became the ignition source, creating an explosion that tore apart a significant portion of the house.
Fire investigators say that gas valve in the laundry room is the same height as the puppy's collar. The fire chief said a gas dryer used to be connected to that valve. But, owners replaced the appliance with an electric dryer. Until Wednesday's mishap, the valve was in the off position.