I returned to the scene of the Blast at Victory Auto Parts in Fitchburg Today:

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The damage is more impressive in the light of day. The Blast took out the office on the left side of the building

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Dropped bits of it

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in the surrounding trees

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And blew out windows in the house next door

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As the building department meets with the owners (who normally would have been in that office that exploded).

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The question became why a gas explosion in a building heated by oil?

it appears the leak came from an old capped off gas line, and the gas built up and was set off by something. The explosion being under the office would also explain why the blast didn’t kill or seriously injure the people actually in the business at the time of the blast.

The Boston Networks are all over the place

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The Donut shop across the street is doing some business from the news people in town no word if Conquest video is as well.

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My final report

So two business closed, perhaps permanently but all things considered given strength of the blast there are a lot more blessings to count than costs in the light of day.

Update: MSM reports Fox, CBS Boston, 7 News, WCVB 5, NECN twice, the Globe, the Worcester Telegram and of course the Sentinel and Enterprise

According to Mayor Lisa Wong, the explosion broke every window in the Linwood Street home closest to the building, leaving its two occupants without a place to stay until the glass is cleaned up and the windows replaced.

Residents in the surrounding neighborhoods felt the force of the blast. Kristy Murphey, 23, was home dyeing her hair with her roommates when they felt the house move.

“We thought a car hit the house,” said Murphey’s roommate, Vanna Rawleigh, 28.

They ran outside to see what happened as a crowd gathered around the site.

The “car hit the house” was the common theme when talking to people about the event.

There was an explosion at the Victory Auto Parts in Fitchburg here is a quick summary and a gallery of photos

EXPECT UPDATES

Text summary:

At approx 5;20 PM an explosion took place at Victory Auto Parts in Fitchburg. Two gentlemen were inside the building at the counter of the business that was open at the time amazingly suffered no serious injuries. The blast broke open the building causing bricks to crumble off of it. Within minutes the fire department was on the scene, the two men were questioned inside an ambulance on the scene but the only visible injury was a small cut to the forehead of one of the men.

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The blast broke windows blocks away including at a gas station down the road. Witnesses at the local donut shop, tattoo parlor, Gas station and Pizzeria all said their buildings. People as far as winter street said they felt a building shake and one gentlemen in his garage two streets over thought someone had crashed into his place as did a business owner two full blocks away.

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Aldrich Auto Body across the street took damage as did the prime gas station a block & a half away. The clerk at a local Sunoco gas station said cigarettes fell off his wall and glass panes cracked in houses up and down the street.

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There are conflicting reports on if there was gas in the building but nobody saw any fire. Mayor Lisa Wong was on the scene being briefed and both local and state police joined fire and Unitil workers examining the area.

The lack of injuries was rather remarkable.

Mike’s Pizza report

My initial arrival

Interview with a person from Winter Street

Firemen at the scene

More reporting

The Patrons of the Donut shop nearby

Update 2: More videos

Attendant from Prime gas

Fitchburg Tattoo parlor

I’d hate to have the needle on me when that explosion took place bzzzzzz OOPS

And the clerk at the Sunoco

More information the next morning.