Officials suspect gas leak in Fullerton explosion

by in News

Fullerton police Saturday warned people to stay away from an area where an explosion in a garage occurred.

Also, a building at Cal State Fullerton was evacuated early Saturday afternoon, apparently because of a chemical reaction.

The two incidents do not appear to be related, according to authorities.

The explosion happened at a residence the 200 block of West Valencia Drive, Fullerton Sgt. Jon Radus said.

“At this point in the investigation, we believe it was the result of a natural gas leak,” Radus said.

The home was destroyed and a neighboring home was red-tagged, Radus said. Building inspectors with the city checked adjacent residences to make sure they’re safe to be occupied.

Emergency calls to police reporting the blast started coming in at 12:44 p.m. Police arrived on scene within two minutes of the first call and evacuated numerous homes immediately, Radus said.

Nobody was inside the home at the time of the explosion. One person who was nearby was hit with debris causing a minor laceration, Radus said. The investigation is ongoing.

About 45 minutes later, Cal State Fullerton police tweeted that Dan Black Hall was being evacuated. A student, while using a chemical cleaning machine, noticed the chemical turning black and giving off an odor, Capt. Scot Willey of the Cal State Fullerton Police Department said.

About 40 to 50 students were evacuated while firefighters from multiple county agencies arrived to investigate. The chemical posed no threat, there were no injuries and the building was reopened at 2:40 p.m., Willey said.

The student was transported to a local hospital out of an abundance of caution, Willey said.