Elliot Olsen is a nationally respected fire and explosion lawyer who has regained millions for clients. If you or a family member were injured in a fire or explosion, you should call Elliot at (612) 337-6126 for a free consultation. He understands the pain and suffering experienced after such a shocking event, and he can help survivors on the road to recovery.

An Indiana teenager is facing several weeks – if not months – of treatment for burn injuries she suffered in a South Whitley home explosion last week.

Summer West, 16, was in the basement of her home at 7439 East County Road 1050 South just outside of South Whitley when a propane gas explosion destroyed part of the house and set the rest on fire.

“Her whole room was consumed with flames and she literally had to run through the flames to get upstairs, to get out of the house,” said her father, Jerry West.

Apparently, Summer West covered her face with her hands as she ran through the flames, sparing her face from the most severe injuries. Still, she sustained third-degree burns to parts of her arms, legs, and hands, and she reportedly already has undergone skin grafts.

Summer West is being treated in the burn unit at St. Joseph Hospital in downtown Fort Wayne.

South Whitley home explosion:
Mother escapes unharmed

River West, Summer’s brother, said he was shaken after arriving home about 30 minutes after the explosion and seeing the smoke pour from the house as firefighters battled the blaze. River West said a police officer originally told him his sister merely suffered burns on her hand.

“Eventually, when we got to the hospital, we found out it’s third-degree burns on her arm, legs and foot, and yeah, it was definitely devastating,” River West said.

Lana West, mother to Summer and Rivers, also was in the house at the time of the explosion, but she escaped unharmed.

South Whitley home explosion:
GoFundMe account set up

Family members said the outpouring of support from friends and family is lifting Summer’s spirits. Click on this link to donate to a GoFundMe account established for Summer West and the West family.

South Whitley home explosion sends teenager to burn unit

A South Whitley home explosion last week severely burned teenager Summer West, who is facing weeks, if not months, of recovery time.

Allentown row-house fire
displaces nearly 50 people

From lehighvalleylive.com: Almost 50 people were displaced from their homes after a huge fire in Allentown, Pennsylvania, about 60 miles north of Philadelphia. According to the Associated Press, one person was taken to a hospital for a minor injury, and a firefighter was treated for a shoulder injury.

At approximately 3 a.m. Sunday, residents were awakened by a loud noise inside a home on the 700 block of North Fountain Street. At least 30 people from eight families were displaced, and at least another 14 people were evacuated as a “precautionary measure,” fire captain John Christopher said.

“It’s a mess right now,” Christopher said from the scene of rubble.

Allentown row-house fire:
An explosion? A crash?

Melissa Holderman, who lives around the corner, said she awoke to the sound of what she thought was an explosion, but she said her husband told her he thought it was something “crashing into a building.”

Ana Rivera woke up in her home at 722 North Fountain Street, two doors from where the fire began, to what sounded like two big trucks crashing. “It’s something unexplainable,” she said of the startling noise.

Like her neighbors, Rivera said she ran outside with just the clothes on her back. She said she saw all the homes on her block start to burn, and neighbors were knocking on one another’s doors making sure everyone was getting away safely.

Sydney Imantrek McKenzie lives at 717 North Fountain Street, across the street from where the fire started. He said he was up late working on videos when he heard a loud noise. “I heard what sounded like a garbage truck, like it hit something,” McKenzie said. “And then I heard rubble falling. I thought to myself, ‘What the heck, it’s not even garbage night.’ “

McKenzie said he then went outside, where he saw that the whole facade of a home up the street had collapsed.

Allentown row-house fire:
Investigation ongoing

Christopher and Allentown police chief Glenn Granitz said they were not labeling the tragedy as an explosion, despite initial reports from the scene. However, an explosives specialist from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was on the scene, and the investigation is ongoing.

Christopher did say that crews arriving on the scene initially did not detect an odor of natural gas.

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