Explosion destroys house
Neighbours heard screaming as a central Auckland house was blown apart in an explosion on Tuesday morning.
Two people were burned in the blast at Mary Dreaver St in New Windsor - police said a woman was taken to Middlemore Hospital in a serious condition, and a man with moderate injuries was taken to Auckland Hospital.
Nearby resident Hemant Parikh posted on Facebook it sounded like a bomb had gone off around 6am.
‘‘Woken up by a big bang and hearing people screaming this morning,’’ Parikh said.
Dave Wood, senior station officer from Avondale fire station, said the force of the explosion ‘‘ripped the house apart’’.
‘‘It was quite a powerful explosion, and it blew the walls about 10 metres,’’ he said.
‘‘It blew the roof off the house and just engulfed the house in flames.’’
Four trucks and 16 firefighters were at the scene beating back flames and working to protect surrounding properties that were put at risk by the blaze.
Police also attended and set up a cordon around the house.
A handful of homes on Mulgan St, behind the fire, were temporarily evacuated.
Fire investigator Jason Goffin confirmed the fire was not being treated as suspicious.
It was possibly caused by a gas leak, he said.
Investigators examined the smouldering wreckage on Tuesday morning as they looked for the fire’s cause.