Explosion rocks Westminster neighborhood; multiple houses damaged

WESTMINSTER, Colo. — An explosion rocked a Westminster neighborhood about 11:35 a.m. Thursday, prompting evacuation calls over a large area.

At least one structure was blown to pieces, with others heavily damaged. Debris was scattered over a large area. No one was killed, but at least two people suffered injuries.

The source of the blast was thought to be 9306 Ingalls St. The two owners of the destroyed home were out at the time and are safe, the Westminster Fire Department said.

Emergency evacuation calls went out to residents in the area between 92nd Avenue and 96th Avenue, and Pierce Street and Westminster Boulevard, the Westminster Fire Department reported. Evacuation orders have been lifted, but two streets remain closed for investigation.

“I just heard a loud explosion that shook my entire apartment complex,” said viewer Brittany Marlier, who lives in the area. “I spoke with neighbors and they felt the impact as well.”

Several residents in the area said they smelled gas in the area before the explosion, and in fact the explosion is thought to be related to natural gas. Xcel teams were on the scene to investigate.