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Fatal Indianapolis explosion prompts warning about natural gas

CASTLE ROCK — After a suspected natural gas leak destroyed over a dozen homes in Indianapolis, a Castle Rock family who lost their home in a gas explosion is offering a warning to Colorado homeowners.

“We need to know more about this natural gas, that’s just the bottom line,” said Dee Melton, the mother of Castle Rock’s Lisa Martinez who lost her home in an October natural gas leak.

The leak and explosion, which neighbors described sounding more like a plane crash or bomb detonation, rocked the Castle Rock community early on the morning of Friday October 12th.

Investigators later determined a gas leak from within the home sparked the explosion which sent five people to a Denver hospital.

“It looks like a bomb fell on it…that’s exactly what it looks like,” added Melton while viewing the damage for the first time a month after the accident.

Home at the time of the explosion were: wife and mother Lisa Martinez, 6-year-old Chuna Martinez,4-year-old Elen Martinez, 11-year-old Oz Martinez, and 7-year-old Ahbie.

On Sunday, a similar explosion rocked a South Indianapolis neighborhood where authorities reported at least two deaths and over a dozen homes destroyed. An investigation into the cause of the Indiana explosion remains ongoing.

The Martinez family reported smelling what they thought was garlic in the minutes leading up to the explosion. For years, gas companies have added strong odors to their natural gas that would indicate a leak to homeowners.

A spokesperson for Black Hills Energy, the company who provided natural gas service to the Martinez family, told FOX-31 Denver that an investigation is still underway.