One woman is dead after a home exploded overnight in LaSalle County.
The explosion in the 300 block of Court Street was reported late Monday night in Streator, a city about 90 miles southwest of Chicago.
Witnesses say the explosion shook homes from more than a block away.
Fire crews remain on the scene, which is now just a pile of debris that used to be a house.
Tim Davison says his 82 year old mother, Ethel, was in her bedroom when their home exploded. He made it out OK, but says he couldn’t save his mother.
“I went back in there to try to get to my mom, but the roof had collapsed right into her room,” said Davison. “There was just no way to get to her, and the flames were too intense.”
Two other homes had fire damage.
Even though Davison says his mother was in the house at the time of the incident, crews have not found anyone in the destroyed home.
“We’re definitely being respectful to the fact that someone could be in there,” said Streator Fire Chief Tom Risley. “We don’t even know for sure someone is in there because we haven’t found anybody. We’re just going by what we were told.”
Davison said he didn’t smell any gas before the explosion.
Nicor Gas has a crew at the scene.
A spokesperson says the surrounding homes are safe.
The cause of the blast remains under investigation.