WEST JORDAN, Utah (ABC 4 News) — A possible explosion rips through a West Jordan home. Neighbors who heard it say it sounded like a freight train.
The fire started around 6:45 Tuesday night at a home near 300 West and 7100 South. Firefighters say the fire may have started in the shed in the back yard and quickly moved to the home’s attached garage.
Hannah Cutler lives right behind the home. “We were sitting at the dinner table eating and we heard this big whoosh sound and I opened the door and ran out and you could see flames,” said Cutler.
Cutler had her two oldest sons jump the fence and start knocking on doors to notify the family inside and neighbors nearby that they needed to get out. “I guess my one son went in and they were still in the house and they wanted to try and put it out so they opened the garage door and flames came in so they closed the garage door and everyone ran out,” said Cutler.
A family of seven live in the house. Only the mother and her young son were home when the fire started. Firefighters were initially told an older son may have been inside. They searched twice and then had to get out because the fire was spreading so quickly. Luckily the son was found at a neighbor’s home.
The family who lives directly next to the house also ran out when they heard the explosion. Lonnie Whytock said, “I was watching the game and I could hear like a freight train coming. I started screaming at my wife to call 911. I knew something was up.”
Whytock was able to move his motor home and start spraying down his garage. He says had the fire department not got there so quickly he fears he would have lost his home.
“It was a couple of minutes from hitting my house then the hose finally came on,” said Whytock. “My house was next.”
Firefighters were able to get the fire under control in about a half an hour. The shed and attached garage are a total loss. Flames also got into the attic, which firefighters say means the entire roof needs to be replaced. It will likely be months before the family can move back into their home. Investigators are still working to determine a cause.