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FD: 1 dead, 2 injured in Phoenix house explosion

FD: 1 dead, 1 injured in PHX house explosion
Posted at 10:30 AM, Dec 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-24 00:43:15-05

The Phoenix Fire Department says crews have extinguished a blaze at a home that exploded after an apparent gas leak and left one person dead and one critically hurt.

Thursday morning's explosion near 11th Avenue and Fillmore Street also damaged a neighboring home.

On Friday, authorities identified 73-year-old Anita Johnson as the woman found dead in the blaze. 

Investigators say Johnson was part of a local charity and was helping deliver the new stove to the home.

Two men, ages 57 and 23, were also injured during the explosion. According to officials, the men were removing a propane tank from the house when the explosion occurred. They suffered non-life threatening injuries.

Daniel Delgado says the two men injured in the blast were his father and brother.

"It was devastating, you know, I started crying a little bit I gotta be honest. It's hard to see your father in that kind of situation. Never seen it before," said Delgado. 

Delgado said both men have severe burns to their body. Delgado's brother is already out of the hospital, but it's unknown when his father will be released.

Fire Department spokesman Capt. Jake Van Hook says the mother and three children who lived in the home are safe.

The cause of Thursday morning's explosion hasn't been determined, but a new gas stove and an empty box are sitting in front of the destroyed home by a delivery truck for a local appliance company.

Without confirming its employees were those involved, Spencer's TV & Appliance general manager Roy Hannah issued a statement saying they are "deeply saddened by the tragedy that took place today" and are praying for the family and friends of the victim.

Southwest Gas said, "Our hearts go out to those touched by today's incident. Safety is always a top priority at Southwest Gas and as a result of our extensive investigation in the areas that we have been granted access to, we have not found any gas reads in the area and at this time we have no information suggesting natural gas played a role in the incident."

A GoFundMe page has been started to assist the Delgado family during this difficult time.  

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