UPDATE: (8:04 p.m.)
TheValleySide has learned that the homeowners of the house that exploded in Little Falls were not home at the time and thus were not injured.
At about 3 p.m., the house of Richelle and Shawn Devereese and their two sons exploded in the 300 block of West Main Street, said Richelle Devereese’s brother, Justin Smithson.
“Everyone is safe and the Red Cross is on site to help,” Smithson said.
The family lost everything in the fire and efforts are already underway to collect donations for them. For now, all donations are being accepted at Niki Marie’s Salon in Ilion, Smithson said.
“They appreciate everyone’s thoughts and prayers,” he said, adding that he is hoping to plan a benefit in the near future.
No official word on the cause of the blaze has been given yet, but National Grid was on the scene and people were being moved back due to “heavy gas flow.”
The Devereeses are accepting donations of clothing, toys and money. Items they are immediately looking for include women’s XL leggings and 2x shirts, men’s XL joggers and 2x shirts, boys’ sizes 8 and 10 clothing and size 3 shoes, toys, games and anything for the boys, Smithson said, noting that one son is autistic and would welcome special needs toys.
LITTLE FALLS – Crews remain on the scene of a multiple-structure fire on West Main Street in Little Falls.
Witnesses in the area report an explosion near 3 p.m., that has effected three houses in the 300-block of West Main Street. No reports from fire and police officials have been released at this time, but witnesses further report that one house “was leveled” and two more are fully involved in flames.
Residents from as far as four houses away have reported windows being blown out of their house due to the explosion.
Several fire departments, including Little Falls, East Herkimer and Herkimer, and ambulances are on the scene. No word on if anyone has been injured.
K-9 units have also been reported on the scene to rule out illicit drug activity in the house where the explosion took place.
- Photos by Kathy Boepple Haberek