WA, PA – Kathie O. Warco, Washington Observer – No one was injured Friday morning when a gas explosion heavily damaged a house on McJ Drive, North Franklin Township.

Two workers were installing a gas stove at the home of Greg and Christie Thomas, 73 McJ Drive, about 8:45 a.m. When they turned on the stove, it triggered the explosion, Thomas said.

The blast threw Greg Thomas against the living room wall. The windows in the living room of the one-story brick ranch were blown 10 feet into the front yard.

Thomas, a retired Washington police chief, and the two workers were able to escape unharmed from the home.

North Franklin fire Chief Ken Patress said there was likely a small gas leak in the basement of the home.

“No one smelled gas,” he said.

The gameroom in the basement caught fire after the blast.

“It gutted the basement and there was heat damage to the rest of the home,” Patress said. “The main thing is no one got hurt.”

State police fire marshal Steve Thompson ruled the fire as accidental.

Thomas said the couple lived in the home for 26 years and recently finished a remodeling project in the kitchen and bathroom. Patress estimated the damage was in excess of $100,000.

Assisting North Franklin were firefighters from Canton, South Franklin and South Strabane townships. Washington city and Morris Township firefighters were on stand-by at their stations. Firefighters were on the scene for about three hours.