Woman injured in Capitol Hill apartment explosion

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DENVER — Several streets were shut down just east of the Colorado State Capitol late Tuesday afternoon after an explosion at an apartment building that neighbors believe might be related to a natural gas leak.

Denver Fire Department spokeswoman Melissa Taylor said firefighters responded to reports of an explosion and damage to a garden-level apartment in the Acacia Apartments at 429 E. 14th Ave. at 3:30 p.m.

One woman was transported to a hospital with nonlife-threatening injuries. There were no other injuries.

A witness said she heard an explosion, smelled smoke and felt heat. She grabbed her cats and left. Windows were knocked out of an apartment so firefighters could release smoke from the unit, another witness said.

Neighbors said a woman tried to light a candle inside her unit when the explosion occurred, but Denver Fire has not confirmed that.

“I heard it and I felt it,” Tiffany Bacher said. “My apartment was shaking. And then I didn’t know what to do because the alarms were going off and I wasn’t sure. I didn’t hear any yelling or anything.”

The Acacia Apartments were evacuated as crews investigated. Several streets in the area were closed but reopened about 6:15 p.m. Residents were allowed back into the building before 7 p.m.

About a dozen Xcel Energy workers were on the scene for a few hours focusing on a gas meter. One resident said people had been complaining of a gas smell to apartment staff for the past few days.

An investigation into the explosion is ongoing.

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