MADISON, S.D. (KELO) — A lot of people were stuck at home Thursday on their second snow day in a row – but for a Madison family, being at home put them in a very dangerous situation.
They were inside their twin home when a gas explosion blew off part of the roof. Thankfully no one was seriously hurt.
The explosion happened around noon Thursday on the north side of Madison, and three people were sent to the hospital to get checked out – a husband, wife and their son. They’ve all been discharged and are doing OK.
For the Shaw family, it was just a regular snow day at home. Caleb is a senior at Chester High School.
“I was just laying in bed, just trying to get ready to shovel all this snow after the blizzard, and I just hear this huge boom and I just look up and I could see the sky. The roof of my room was gone and my window was blown open, and it was just like raining insulation and I was covered. And I just didn’t know what to do,” Caleb Shaw said.
“I was on the other side of the house, and I guess I didn’t hear anything, but all of a sudden it was raining drywall and insulation, and so where I was at didn’t get it as bad,” Caleb’s mom Shelly Shaw said.
They were told by officials that heavy snow on a pipe may have caused it to break and leak gas.
“What I understand from my husband, Robin, was he was just going through the door. There’s no light switch that he touched. He just opened the door to go through and the explosion happened,” Shelly said.
Before they could even process what was going on, help was already there when a neighbor, who is a Wentworth firefighter, ran over.
“And then all of a sudden, there’s a man at Caleb’s blown-out window telling us to come through the window,” Shelly said.
“Yeah, I didn’t even get off the phone with 911 yet,” Caleb said.
Video shows firefighters trying to get to the home, but crews had to move large snow drifts out of the way first.
The family got out and was taken to the hospital. Caleb needed oxygen after inhaling some insulation and Robin had some minor burns, but they are doing fine now.
“We just thank everybody. The hospital gave us clothes and shoes and fed us, and so many people have called and expressed their prayers and good lucks to us. And yeah, we just have a lot to go through right now because that was our forever,” Shelly said.
“We’re really lucky that it wasn’t a lot worse. It could have been way worse. We were just very lucky to get out alive, Caleb said.
The family says they’ve received a lot of support after the explosion, and the American Red Cross has provided them a place to stay for the next couple days. They are not allowed back inside the home yet, but they plan to check on all their belongings as soon as they can.