A Motel 6 in Bremerton, Washington, experienced a large explosion on Tuesday night as a result of a gas leak, injuring one person. Multiple angles of the gas explosion were captured by the motel’s security cameras. You can see the devastation in the video above.
According to the Huffington Post, the injured victim was a 59-year-old man named Larry Jennings, who worked for Cascade Natural Gas. He suffered a broken neck and several severe burns as a result of the motel gas explosion. Jennings was at the Motel 6 investigating the reported gas leak. He was unfortunate enough to be in the wrong spot when the blast occurred and is now in critical condition at a local hospital.
According to CNN, the motel gas explosion was so powerful that it sent a group of firefighters flying 20-feet back from the impact. All of the motel guests had been evacuated before the blast, according to Police Chief Steve Strachan. A few guests were unaccounted for at the time of the gas explosion, but their phones were later tracked to determine they were away from the motel at the time.
“There is no evidence that the people who had originally been unaccounted for were at the hotel at the time,” said Bremerton Fire Chief Al Duke. “Cadaver dogs have been through the hotel several times, and we are pretty confident there was no one in there.”
The gas explosion obliterated sixteen rooms within the motel. The manager of the hotel, Tonya Hinds, was the first to smell the gas leak. She pulled the fire alarm and cleared out the entire building, saving the lives of approximately 60 people.
“My gut instinct just said, ‘I need to evacuate,'” she said. “I said, ‘I want you to get up to the upper lot, and get distance, and get away from this building.'”
Hinds is continuing to offer help to the people who lost their shelter as a result of the gas explosion. She has been distributing food, water, and clothing donated by the Red Cross to the former guests.
Local residents reported that they could hear the motel gas explosion from miles away.
— Emily Serdar (@emilyserdar) August 19, 2015
The accident may have been caused by a guest who broke a gas line when she left the building through a back window. Investigators believe the pipe was damaged before the gas explosion, though it doesn’t appear to broken intentionally.
What would you do if you were told there may be a gas explosion in your motel room?