Explosion in Southern Indianapolis...possible meteor fragment??

Gimpy

The Living Force
No, there are no facts on what this was caused by...just lots of ridiculous speculation, and the ATF, fire depts etc are not saying
anything.


http://www.theindychannel.com/news/local-news/loud-explosion-rocks-indianapolis-south-southeast-side


http://news.yahoo.com/indy-neighborhood-devastated-explosion-1-dead-092811244.html


From the first article:
"Marion County Sheriff John Layton heard the explosion from Southport Road and Madison Avenue.

"It was such an explosion that I knew it was a catastrophe," Layton said. "I was probably three miles away, and my police car shook."
"A lot of house have been damaged, some severely and some a little bit," Ballard said, adding that there was "major damage" to homes immediately surrounding those that were destroyed.

Windows and doors were blown out of homes a block or two away from the blast, Ballard said.


I'm keeping an eye out for more news, but so far official word is nothing.

Some photos from a photographer here:

http://usnews.nbcnews.com/_news/2012/11/11/15083724-two-killed-homes-destroyed-in-huge-indianapolis-explosion?lite


Are these actual on site photos? I don't know. When photos appear 'too good' it raises a red flag, but that is just the result of having a suspicious nature.

– Mod edit: Fixed links.
 

anart

A Disturbance in the Force
For some reason, neither of those links will open for me right now. It does sound interesting. Here's a link - http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-explosion-levels-home-damages-others-in-indianapolis-20121110,0,6224901.story
 

Beau

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They are saying it may have been caused by a natural gas explosion. But I'm skeptical, reading this article:

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A roaring explosion that leveled two homes and set two others ablaze in a huge fire forced about 200 people from an Indianapolis neighborhood where two people were killed, authorities said Sunday. The powerful nighttime blast shattered windows, crumpled walls and inflicted other damage on at least 14 other homes.

Four people were taken to a hospital with minor injuries after the explosion and fire, the Indianapolis Fire Department said in a statement. Fire Lt. Bonnie Hensley said firefighters put out the flames and then went through the rubble and damaged homes one at a time in case people had been left behind. Two bodies have been recovered.

Some witnesses said in televised reports that they heard people screaming "help me! help me!" after the explosion and fire and that two parents and two children were safely pulled from one house that caught fire.

"This looks like a war zone; it really does," Hensley told The Associated Press. "Police officers and fire department officials remain at the scene searching for other possible victims." She said they used search lights until dawn as they peered into the damaged and ruined homes.

The fire department has not released the names of those killed. Hensley said one body was found in one of the leveled homes after the fire was put out.

The explosion at 11 p.m. Saturday destroyed two houses that were side by side and spread fire to two other nearby homes in the neighborhood on the south side of Indianapolis. Hensley said at least 14 other homes were damaged in the area by the blast's shock wave or flying debris.

The blast was heard for miles around. Authorities said they had no immediate information on the cause. The fire department and other agencies were investigating.

People who were asleep when the blast happened were evacuated in their pajamas, scooping up their pets as they left, authorities said. They left what some described as a chaotic scene of tall flames rising on the Indianapolis skyline.

Survivors reported shattered windows, caved-in walls and garage doors knocked off their hinges. Of the two homes that were leveled by the blast, Hensley said: "There's nothing left."

Bryan and Trina McClellan were at home with their 23-year-old son Eric when the shock wave from the blast a block away shook their home. It knocked out the windows along one side of their house, and their first instinct was to check on their grandchildren, two toddlers who were in the basement. One was holding his ears and saying "Loud noise, loud noise."

Eric McClellan said he ran afterward to the scene of the explosion and saw homes flat or nearly so.

"Somebody was trapped inside one of the houses, and the firefighters were trying to get to him. I don't know if he survived," he said, adding that firefighters ordered him to leave the area.

All power, gas and other utilities in the area were shut off as a precaution as emergency officials swarmed the site.

About 200 people were taken to an elementary school, where some milled about in pajamas and coats they had grabbed as they fled. Some had their dogs on leashes, and one woman had evacuated her home with a cat. Most eventually left to stay with relatives, friends or at hotels, but 15 to 25 remained through the night, sleeping on cots.

Pam Brainerd, a 59-year-old hospice nurse, said she was asleep when the explosion blew out the upstairs windows in her house.

"I was sleeping on the sofa and all of a sudden, my upstairs windows were blowing out and my front door was falling in," Brainerd said. "My front door came off the frame. It was the largest bang I've ever heard."

She stepped outside and saw what she described tall flames one street away. "There was a house engulfed in flames, and I could see it spreading to other houses," she added.
 

Gimpy

The Living Force
From the first link/article:

Posted: 11/11/2012
Last Updated: 16 minutes ago

By: TheIndyChannel.com Staff | Email Me

INDIANAPOLIS - At least two people were killed and at least eight people were injured in an explosion and massive fire that tore through a neighborhood on Indianapolis' south side late Saturday evening.

The explosion happened about 11:10 p.m. in the 8400 block of Fieldfare Way in the Richmond Hill subdivision, near Sherman Drive between County Line Road and Stop 11 Road.

The blast was so powerful that it was heard from several miles away in much of Perry and Franklin Township. Some people reported hearing the blast in Hancock and Shelby counties.

The Indianapolis Fire Department confirmed the fatalities early Sunday morning. Wishard Memorial Hospital received four patients. Methodist Hospital said it had one patient from the blast and expected two more, and St. Francis Hospital said it had one patient in the aftermath of the explosion. Injuries to those eight patients were not believed to be life-threatening.

IFD said four homes were destroyed in the explosion and subsequent fire. An additional 18 homes were damaged.

Initially, authorities speculated that the culprit may have been a natural gas explosion, but they later backed away from that, saying that an investigation will determine the cause.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was called in to help with the investigation.

Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard spent some time in the damaged area early Sunday morning and said two homes were leveled.

"A lot of house have been damaged, some severely and some a little bit," Ballard said, adding that there was "major damage" to homes immediately surrounding those that were destroyed.

Windows and doors were blown out of homes a block or two away from the blast, Ballard said.

Firefighters were putting out hotspots into the early-morning hours and had gone from home to home to account for everyone who lives nearby.

Homes in the neighborhood surrounding the blast and fire were evacuated. Affected residents were taken to Mary Bryan Elementary School. About 150 people were there as of 1 a.m. Sunday.

Marion County Sheriff John Layton heard the explosion from Southport Road and Madison Avenue.

"It was such an explosion that I knew it was a catastrophe," Layton said. "I was probably three miles away, and my police car shook."

"It's an incredible scene over there," said Kendale Adams, Indianapolis police public information officer.

Initial 911 calls came in with residents thinking the boom was the result of a plane crash, but that was quickly ruled out, Layton said.

Witness Kirk McDonald and two relatives who live nearby felt the blast and then jumped into action.

"It was a loud explosion. The whole house shook, things falling off the wall," McDonald said. "I could see insulation falling out of the sky. The house that blew up, there was nothing left of it but sticks."

McDonald said he could hear people screaming from inside a house nearby, including a man, woman and two children.

"I went inside to help the people out. As we got her out, the whole house was catching fire," McDonald said. "We had to dig off two-by-fours, siding."

Ballard praised first responders.

"People have really come together right now," Ballard said. "They got down there so fast and did such a great job."

Nurses and other medical workers flocked to the scene to help in any way they could.

Bill Jenkins, a pastor at the Church of Acts and also a police chaplain, heard the blast from his home a few blocks away and came to the scene.

"The firefighters, police department, all of the first responders are doing a terrific job," Jenkins said. "We're going person to person, trying to help them."

Watch RTV6 and refresh this page for updates.
 

anart

A Disturbance in the Force
Here is a story of a natural gas explosion in CO that destroyed a house - with pictures. Notice how only the house with the explosion was destroyed (and it's not as flat as the Indianapolis houses) and that the rest of the neighborhood was just fine. Neighbors also reported smelling natural gas before the explosion. If Indianapolis was a natural gas explosion, it was MUCH larger than the one in CO. My guess is that it wasn't and it very well may have been an overhead explosion.

http://photos.denverpost.com/2012/10/12/photos-natural-gas-explosion-destroys-castle-rock-home-sends-5-to-hospital/#7
 

Gimpy

The Living Force
I'm still trying to find a good Google Earth image of that area. So far nothing recent enough to show if there is a trajectory for a meteor, though that doesn't mean much. Overhead explosions may not reveal anything like that.

So far speculation is that it was a natural gas explosion caused by thieves trying to remove copper pipes from the houses. Which makes no sense, as natural gas is not moved through copper pipes, and both houses appeared to be in a heavily populated subdivision. Given enough time people come up with their own explanations for things, and the officials may not say a word for a week or more.
 

Laura

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No, doesn't look like a gas explosion; could be shock-wave from an airburst.
 

anart

A Disturbance in the Force
Here is a shot from last month of the gas explosion in CO that destroyed a house and then a second shot from Indianapolis. A day time shot from Indianapolis would be a big help, but they certainly don't look comparable.
 

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anart

A Disturbance in the Force
From here - http://www.foxnews.com/us/2012/11/11/fire-official-explosion-levels-indianapolis-house-4-other-homes-ablaze-injuries/
"The cause of the explosion and fires wasn't immediately clear, but Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard dismissed speculation of a possible plane crash soon after he arrived on the scene and described a scene of devastation that went on "for blocks on end.""

If the devastation went on for "blocks on end" that wasn't a natural gas explosion - or if it was, it was seriously atypical.
 

whitecoast

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
Gimpy said:
I'm still trying to find a good Google Earth image of that area. So far nothing recent enough to show if there is a trajectory for a meteor, though that doesn't mean much. Overhead explosions may not reveal anything like that.

So far speculation is that it was a natural gas explosion caused by thieves trying to remove copper pipes from the houses. Which makes no sense, as natural gas is not moved through copper pipes, and both houses appeared to be in a heavily populated subdivision. Given enough time people come up with their own explanations for things, and the officials may not say a word for a week or more.

They could be quite at a loss to explain this as well, without knowing what we do about the behaviour of MoCFs. That nobody's pulling out the terrorism card (yet) may show there is some common sense left in people here. Who knows.
 

Beau

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Gimpy, I can't access that link. I found some daytime photos here http://www.indystar.com/viewart/20121110/NEWS/121110035/2-dead-after-explosion-levels-2-homes-damages-18-others-Indianapolis-Southside .
 
I have a lot of family in Indianapolis. Just called my dad and left a voicemail. Don't know how likely they will be willing (or able) to investigate and bring back photos, but I'll try. Very wild.
 

Gimpy

The Living Force
Heimdallr said:
Gimpy, I can't access that link. I found some daytime photos here http://www.indystar.com/viewart/20121110/NEWS/121110035/2-dead-after-explosion-levels-2-homes-damages-18-others-Indianapolis-Southside .

Sorry all. I'm not computer literate.

Hubby was able to save two of the aerial photos for me, but there are copywrite issues involved. If would be useful, I'm willing to buy a few of these images for documentation purposes.

Thoughts on that?

The link Heimdallr posted includes all the shots for sale.
 
Those daytime overhead photos make it look like it COULD be a gas explosion that came from the center house. But that would indeed have been huge. If it were an overhead burst, wouldn't it have to have come pretty much straight down? Just comparing it to the streak effect from the "bunker explosion" earlier.
 
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