Blast that leveled Oregon duplex leaves residents shaken


OREGON, Wis. — Oregon residents say their neighborhood is typically quiet, but the aftermath of a house explosion Friday morning left some witnesses shaken.

“I was in my bathroom and I first felt, like, a rumble,” Oregon resident Jan Bahr said. “Not, like an earthquake shake, but more of the house kind of shifting.”

Despite seeing debris outside her doorstep, it didn’t seem real to her due to the relatively calm nature of the area.

“My first thought, and I was texting a friend, was that there was an explosion,” Bahr said. “But that seemed so unrealistic for Oregon and so I thought maybe a tree fell down or a car hit the house.”

RELATED: None injured in Oregon duplex explosion that damaged neighboring homes

Bahr was able to capture the shockwaves of the explosion with her doorbell camera. The video shows a significant amount of debris falling, as well as the damage caused to her porch light.

“I saw that it just, like, exploded and all this smoke comes from further back,” Bahr said. “It was a very surprising way to wake up on a Friday morning.”

Sam Bronchetti, who lives across the street from the scene, said he was just getting up around 8:30 a.m. when he heard the blast.

“The shake was a little freaky,” Bronchetti said. “I mean, it felt like an explosion.”

Startled by the sound, Bronchetti looked outside the window to see what was going on.

“I opened up the shades out to my back and I saw debris falling, it almost looked like snow,” Bronchetti said.

@channel3000_wisc Ring doorbell camera video shows the moments after a home exploded in Oregon, Wisconsin, this morning. More coverage on Channel3000.com. #wisconsin #breakingnews #fyp #explosion ♬ original sound – Channel3000/News 3 Now

Bronchetti was also able to capture much of the chaos that followed the explosion with his home’s Ring doorbell camera. The footage documents the sound of the incident in addition to his neighbors notifying him that one of his bushes caught on fire.

“‘I kind of made my way to the front door, saw a bunch of smoke, saw some people running around and said what’s going on? And they said, ‘Well your bushes caught on fire and we just put it out with a shovel.’”

Bronchetti said the police then told him he needed to evacuate, and he eventually made his way to a friend’s home. Though he noticed damage to the porch, he is still unsure of how much of his home was affected.

Though the aftermath startled many residents, officials said the area is safe and that no residents were harmed by the incident. Someone who identified herself as a neighbor of the family who lived there set up a GoFundMe page online.

“We were all just surprised and hopeful that no one was injured in it, seemed like a pretty big area impacted so we were just concerned,” Bahr said.

The duplex that was destroyed was under construction at the time; officials believe gas was to blame for the blast.





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