House explosion on Detroit's west side caused by stolen furnace

Posted at 3:55 AM, May 26, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-26 17:15:38-04

Fire investigators say a stolen furnace is to blame for a large house explosion in Detroit overnight.

It happened on the city's west side in the 6800 block of Evergreen Rd. near Warren Ave.

Deputy Fire Commissioner David Fornell tells us the home was vacant and there are no injuries or fatalities.

"What happened was what we call a high level explosion,” said Fornell.

The family who owns the house tells us it was vacant and getting cleaned up for the next renters.

"The last tenants moved out, my dad came to change the locks on Wednesday, everything was good. We found out the furnace was stolen in the middle of the night,” said Jalyn Marcicky.

Formell says when the furnace was ripped from the wall, the home began filling with gas.

"What it appears is that when the gas, air mixture was at the right consistency the water heater was still operating and the flames from the water heater caused the explosion."

"Oh it was loud, it was extremely loud. The pressure from the explosion blew a whole crack through the room window,” said Deatrice Trammel who lives directly next door.

The entire side exterior of her rental home is damaged with large debris even landing on her roof.

Inside she says it's worse, ”The doors won't close, they're blown off the hinges. The window in the back is blown out into the room, and there's a crack going through the whole bedroom wall."

Investigators will now take the home apart piece by piece to look for any clues into who did this, telling Seven Action News this could turn into a criminal investigation.