Gas explodes in house kitchen

By Kiri Gillespie

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An explosion in a Tauranga family's kitchen erupted with such force that it blew all four gas stove knobs off their screws and kitchen cabinets off the wall.

Smoke filled the rented 15th Ave house that is home to Cruz Richmond, Kyla Cox and their children.

"I was about to put the potatoes on and then whoof, something hit me... all these blew off," Ms Cox said gesturing to the screws sticking out of the "munted" stove.

Ms Cox had just switched on a gas hob on Thursday night when the explosion happened less than a minute later. The stove top was warped upwards and the oven door bent so much it can no longer close. Element racks flew out. The nearby sink sunk a few millimetres into the bench and a corner appliance cabinet was ripped from the wall it had been attached to.

Mr Richmond said although they saw no flames, the explosion "freaked us out".

"It could have been much worse," he said.

"We are lucky it wasn't the bottle itself."

Mr Richmond went outside to turn off their LPG cylinder that feeds the stove while Ms Cox called 111.

Tauranga firefighters arrived to assess the scene and were intrigued by what they found.

"It was surprising. The more you looked at it, the more you could see things had moved," station officer Nigel Liddicoat said.

"The windows and everything were intact but you could see changes. A appliance cabinet on the bench that had come away. The hobs had come out as well."

Ms Cox and Mr Richmond had only moved into the rental property three weeks earlier.

The landlord lives in Australia.

The 9kg LPG cylinder was only filled a few days prior.

When Mr Liddicoat checked it out, it was empty.

"It appeared that something behind the wall was leaking. They then started using the hobs and boom. Fortunately no one was injured, just shocked I think."

The smoke was cleared and children checked on. Ms Cox and Mr Richmond invited family members over to stay the night. The family ended up having toast for dinner instead.

- Bay of Plenty Times

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