Two in hospital after suspected house explosion

Aerial view of a house damaged in an incident in Jersey
Four people, including two children, were taken to hospital after the emergency services rescued them from the house [BBC]

Four people, including two children, were taken to hospital in Jersey after reports of an explosion on Wednesday night.

Emergency services were called to reports of a suspected explosion at a terraced house in the Mont Pinel area of St Saviour shortly before 23:00 BST.

States of Jersey Police said the property suffered "significant damage" but the cause has been deemed unexplained.

Two children, aged 2 and 5, were unharmed but two adults remain in hospital in a stable condition with non-life threatening or life changing injuries.

The damaged building with a wall missing and furniture including a bunk bed visible
A children's bunk bed is visible inside the property at Le Mont Pinel, St Saviour, which is a tightly packed residential area [BBC]

The house affected is on a lane in Le Mont Pinel, a tightly packed residential area about 100m (328ft) from a hotel popular with holidaymakers.

Four neighbouring properties were evacuated as a precaution, police said.

A photo from the edge of the police cordon shows the house with the front of the property exposed and a children's bunk bed and other furniture visible inside.

Two women who live below the affected house said their property "shook".

Jersey police had declared a major incident but said that had now been stood down, with the incident moving to a recovery phase.

Explosion damage
The cause of the incident remains unknown [BBC]

The force said structural engineers were due to attend the property, and three neighbouring properties, to assess the structural integrity before investigations can begin.

The Government of Jersey is also supporting 19 displaced residents with accommodation and further essentials.

The scene is secure and police remain on site.

Chief Minister Deputy Lyndon Farnham said: "Our thoughts are with the family affected and those who have been displaced as a result."

A pre-school, Acrewood Day Nursery, was closed for the day on police advice.

Jersey Electricity workers had been on site cutting off the electricity supply as a precaution.

Earlier today, Island Energy said it was supporting the emergency services at the scene.

Aerial view of the damaged house with broken tiles on the roof and debris in the garden
Police said it was declared a major incident [BBC]

St Saviour Constable Kevin Lewis said residents had coped well.

"Well they were quite shocked, yes, and they obviously brought their pets with them... but everyone was in sort of good spirits, but obviously quite shocked with what’s going on," he said.

Mr Lewis said: "They sort of mentioned hearing a loud bang, and they said police arrived very quickly, police and emergency services, and they were just being evacuated as a precaution."

'Very scary'

Karen Basile, 62, who lives in a neighbouring house, said she heard an "enormous bang" which shook her property.

She said the house continued to collapse shortly after emergency services arrived but crews still managed to go inside to rescue four people.

"It was very scary because it sounded like an explosion," she said.

"We knew there were people in the house involved because we could hear people shouting out.

"[We] could hear people talking to them... it was really quite shocking for everybody."

Karen Basile, from Jersey
Karen Basile said the emergency services were "absolutely amazing" [BBC]

Ms Basile praised emergency services as "absolutely amazing".

She said: "It was a man who came out first, he was walking, and then I heard them say 'it’s a grab and go'.

"Everybody came out very quickly after that."

She said another occupant of the house was carried out on a stretcher.

"Very quickly all the emergency services moved away from the house, that’s how unstable it was," she said.

Additional reporting by Charles Vivian

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