Update: Firefighters in Southwest Omaha Battle Double House Fire - FOX 42: Omaha News, Sports and Weather; kptm.com |

Update: Firefighters in Southwest Omaha Battle Double House Fire

Posted: Updated:
Courtesy: Brandon Strine Courtesy: Brandon Strine

OMAHA (KPTM) - Two propane tanks explode, burning a house to the ground in west Omaha.

The flames shot several hundred feet into the air and you could see the smoke for miles.

Firefighters say by the time they arrived, one propane tank had already exploded.  Then, within minutes, a second tank blew up.  "It was a pretty good size explosion.  It was loud, you could hear glass breaking, flying," Brandon Strine says.

Two electricians were working on the house near 195th and Shadow Ridge Drive when it caught fire and exploded.  "It was like the biggest firework on the 4th of July but bigger."

Two propane tanks blew up and the house caved in.  Brandon Strine and Brian Feherkle were working on a house down the street when they noticed the smell of smoke.  "We ran out and made sure there was nobody in it and we stood down here and talked to the guys that were in the house working, I guess they had a broken heater hose and it caught on fire and they couldn't get it out," Strine says.

Dozens of firefighters arrived just before the second propane tank exploded.  The flames caught the house next door on fire. Authorities say it was a risky and unsafe situation.  "Going into this fire could've been very dangerous, not knowing how many compressed gas containers are in there, cylinders anytime you have fire impinging on them they expand and they explode and send shrapnel and fireball, ya it's very dangerous," Assistant Fire Chief, Dan Stolinski says.

Fire crews and the construction workers all escaped unharmed.

Authorities say the house is destroyed.  No word yet on whether the builder plans to rebuild.  The cause of the fire is under investigation. 

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