Official: House blew at or near gas oven

Published 12:50 pm Saturday, April 4, 2009

Contributing editor
The explosion that destroyed a house in Washington on Thursday appears to have originated at or near a gas oven, according to city fire officials.
The Washington Fire-Rescue-EMS-Inspections Department continues to investigate the explosion at 719 Boston Ave., which injured homeowner James “Buddy” Murray.
After being transported to Beaufort County Medical Center for treatment, Murray was moved to the burn unit at the Ambulatory Care Center of N.C. Memorial Hospital in Chapel Hill. He was listed in good condition there Friday afternoon, said hospital spokeswoman Stephanie Crayton.
Murray told investigators the explosion occurred as he was working on a propane-gas water heater, said Washington Fire Chief Jimmy Davis, in a short news release issued Friday.
The explosion, which occurred just before 11 a.m., leveled Murray’s home and damaged a neighboring house. The explosion scattered debris around the neighborhood.
Yates said that conversation likely won’t happen for a few days, until “he gets to feeling better.”
Davis and division chief Robbie Rose, the city’s fire marshal, and Gerald Seighman, volunteer-support coordinator, are directing the investigation, Yates said.
No law-enforcement agencies are assisting with the investigation, Yates said.
related photo: A phonograph and microwave oven sit amid the rubble Friday morning at the home of James “Buddy” Murray on Boston Avenue in Washington. (WDN Photo/Paul Dunn)