KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) – Fire crews were battling a house fire Wednesday where the house has collapsed.
Crews were on the scene of East 15th and Fremont Avenue just before 4:30 p.m. for a house fire.
Police tape went up at 7:15 with the discovery of a body, something many neighbors feared would be the case after a man ran out and told them his friend was inside.
Michael Russell works at a pawn shop a block away and ran up when he saw the smoke.
“You can just feel the heat off the house,” Michael Russell, who was a witness, said.
People doing everyday things like laundry, jolted.
“All of a sudden, pow,” Manuel Gonzales, who was another witness, said.
“I was in the back yard with my husband,” Moniece Phillips, who is a neighbor to the home owner, said.
“I thought it was a car crash or something,” Maurice Williams, who was a witness, said.
Surveillance video shows the house just before the explosion, then, in an instant, it’s gone.
“It sounded like two trains colliding,” Gonzales said.
“And it shook the house,” Phillips said.
Firefighters chopped into the rubble, noting windows blown out that were untouched by fire, a sign that the explosion came first, then the fire.
“The walls came out; the roof came down so there’s a lot of hidden areas,” Deputy Chief Jimmy Walker, who is with the Kansas City Fire Department, said.
One neighbor wrung her hands, as she watched.
Elsa’s daughter, Marianna Delgado, translated her mother for us.
“She’s really worried because she thinks the people are still in there and the dogs too,” Elsa Delgado, neighbor, said.
Fire crews had the same worry about one man, because of a second man who spread the word.
“He jumped and ran over here, and the dog went down the street. And he said somebody was in the house,” Williams said.
A cadaver dog was brought in and not long after word spread that the K-9 found someone, the worry changed from if, to who.
“And I’m hoping that it’s not him. But I have a feeling it is,” Robert Weber, who is the homeowner’s friend, said.
The man who ran out and told others about the man trapped inside did not stick around long enough for firefighters to speak with him.