Fire Engulfs South St. Louis Home

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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) - Neighbors in one South St. Louis neighborhood were still shaken the morning after a home burst into flames. They say the house exploded.

St. Louis Firefighters rushed to Gannett Street at Ridgewood Avenue around 10 Tuesday night. Fire Captain Dan Sutter said crews quickly knocked down the one-alarm fire. But, some neighbors were still awake hours later. Everyone we spoke to said they heard a boom. Then, they saw the flames.

"We were sitting watching TV, said Rebecca Kreynest. “And then we heard a boom, and it shook the windows in our house."

"It was just an explosion,” said Christa King, who was at home next door. “I mean, you can see that house. It's completely burnt to a crisp. My whole side of my house that I just refinished is gone."

King found that the fire melted the siding on her house. She later found that one of her windows was blown out. There is damage to another house on the other side. Teri Chastain was also home.

“I am just happy no one got hurt,” she said. “The fire department got here really quick.”

Another neighbor, Jane Bottini, says the home that caught fire has been a problem for some time.

“We’ve been trying to get rid of the house forever,” Bottini looked over her shoulder through the charred home. “I don’t know how many times we’ve called the city. It’s been empty for about a year. It’s just been a nuisance.”

All the women we spoke to said they were excited by how quickly the fire department responded. Neighbors add that the crew’s actions were the reason why all three homes remained standing and no one was hurt.

Fire investigators are still looking for a cause.

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