Man rescued after Hamilton house explosion, gas shut off in 300 homes

Click to play video: 'Hamilton house explosion sends elderly man to hospital'
Hamilton house explosion sends elderly man to hospital
WATCH ABOVE: The Ontario Fire Marshal is investigating after a house on Gibson Ave., in Hamilton exploded and collapsed. An elderly man trapped inside was rushed to hospital. Ashley Molnar reports – Oct 24, 2017

A man has been rescued after being trapped in a house that exploded on Gibson Avenue in Hamilton Tuesday afternoon.

Fire Safety Officer Claudio Mostacci said at around 3:30 p.m. the victim was taken to hospital with unknown injuries.

“Our compliance specialists were there,” he said. “We had to do a lot of cribbing and making sure there wasn’t any further collapse.”

Emergency responders on scene of a house collapse in Hamilton on Oct. 24. Sara Cain/AM 900 CHML

Police said gas had been shut down in the area, with about 200 homes affected. Several nearby homes were evacuated, but the Red Cross said the residents returned after a couple of hours.

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A later update from Hamilton fire pegged the number of affected homes at 300.

The street was cordoned off with police tape, but photos of the house posted online show its bottom half destroyed, the roof intact but tilted forward and nearly touching the ground, and a car half-buried under the rubble.

There were initially reports that a dog was also inside the house at the time of the incident, and was later identified to be a service dog belonging to the survivor of the explosion.

“We found the dog. He wouldn’t move. Traumatized quite a bit,” a neighbour said.

Hamilton fire said the structural integrity of the property next to the collapsed house was to be examined by an engineer before it could be reoccupied.

The Office of the Fire Marshal and an inspector from the Technical Standards & Safety Authority (T.S.S.A) responded to the scene and will conduct an investigation into what caused the explosion.

Crews do not yet have a damage estimate.

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With files from Kerri Breen, Briana Carnegie and The Canadian Press

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