Howell Township, MI- While the investigation into the cause of an explosion that destroyed a Howell Township home and killed a resident continues, police have tentatively identified the victim as William J. Klein.
Meanwhile, a funeral service is tentatively set Wednesday at the familys church, Oak Grove Church at 6686 Oak Grove Road. No other details were immediately available.
Livingston County Sheriff Bob Bezotte said this morning that investigators are still waiting for confirmation the body is Klein. That confirmation is expected to come through dental records, he said.
Preliminary investigation indicates the 7 p.m. Friday explosion may have occurred due to a gas leak, Chief Andy Pless of the Howell Area Fire Department said.
The primary explosion destroyed the 1,500-square-foot home located in the 700 block of East Allen Road, near Oak Grove Road in Howell Township.
The explosion, which also killed at least four cats living in the home, created a debris field about 100 yards wide, Pless said.
It might have been a gas leak, the fire chief said. Were waiting on the insurance company to send an investigator this week. Well find the furnace, water heater and they will try to rebuild the furnace and find out what happened.
Initially fire officials thought an estimated 500-gallon propane tank blew after their arrival on scene, but Pless said later investigation indicated the second explosion was a smaller tank used most likely to fuel a barbecue.
The larger propane tank, he said, did vent, gas was released and it burned, but it did not explode.
Officials said Klein was the only resident home at the time of the explosion. His wife, daughter and a son, who is expected to get married Saturday, were not home at the time.
Bezotte said it is fortunate that workers from Oak Grove United Methodist Church had left the home about 10 minutes before the explosion.
Bezotte said it does not appear that the roof work being done contributed to the explosion.
Theres no other source of energy and an electrical (cause) has been eliminated, Bezotte said. There is no indication of a bomb.