• Father, baby injured in Pawtucket house explosion


    PAWTUCKET, R.I. (MyFoxBoston.com) -- Rhode Island fire officials responded to the scene of a house explosion in Pawtucket Tuesday.

    The explosion happened at a home on Mineral Spring Avenue at about 11 a.m.

    A father, mother and a baby were in the home at the time of the blast. Officials said the father sustained third-degree burns to 75-percent of his body. He remains in critical condition at Rhode Island Hospital.

    The baby was transported to Hasbro Children's Hospital after sustaining second-degree burns to the head and face. The woman was uninjured.

    Officials said three good Samaritans assisted the family until emergency crews arrived.

    "There was no one on the second floor. By the time I got up to the third floor there was a woman coming out with a baby and she was naked," said Robert Garree, one of the men who helped. "I don't know if her clothes got blown off her or not."

    Eric Silva, who lived on the first floor of the house, also rushed to help.

    "The gentleman was burned pretty bad, the baby was a little burned, and the mother seemed like she was alright," he said.

    An elderly housing complex located across the street was evacuated as a result of the explosion. There was no reported damage to the complex.

    Investigators say a brand new heating system recently installed in the home. Initial reports suggest the damage was caused by a gas explosion. National Grid and a housing inspector joined both the state and local fire marshal at the scene.

    National Grid said it's technicians checked, but couldn't find any leaks in the lines that feed the building natural gas. Authorities said whatever triggered the explosion apparently happened on the third floor.

    Neighbors said the triple decker was boarded up and unoccupied for months before tenants were recently allowed to move in in September. No one will be moving back - the building is totaled, along with everything the tenants owned.

    Next Up: