Hudson, IA –

A liquid propane gas leak is to blame for a massive house explosion in rural Black Hawk County. The blast ripped through the home at 5734 South Hudson Road, reducing it to rubble.

Fire officials spent about five hours digging through the debris. After ruling out several possibilities, they determined LP gas is to blame for the explosion.

The massive house explosion in rural Hudson looks bad from the ground, but horrible from up above. People passing by say they can’t believe their eyes. Lamont Rice witnessed the explosion He says, “There was just debris flying all over the place, bricks, wood, insulation, it was just nasty.”

The explosion also flung debris in trees, onto roofs, and even into far away fields. Investigators from the State Fire Marshal’s Office and the Hudson Fire Department and Police Departments spent the day digging through the mess, trying to find out what happened. Mike Lillebo with the State Fire Marshal’s Office says, “It’s a combination of looking at the scene as well as talking to witnesses, owners, that type of thing.” Investigator Mike Keefe adds, “We’re just going to look at everything. If there’s any natural gas, we’ll check that. We’ll check anything that can cause an explosion.”

Nobody was living in the house at the time of the explosion. The Hudson Police Chief says electricity to the home was still turned on. The State Fire Marshal says the owners of the rental house live in Decorah, but were out of state for the day. There’s no estimate yet on how much the damage will cost.