The sound of explosions was heard frequently throughout the July 4 long weekend in Carmel as residents celebrated the holidays with fireworks, but an unexpected explosion caused extensive damage to a house in Home Place and left its owner with second degree burns.
Jennifer Clark smelled smoke on July 5 coming from the front bedroom of her home on Santa Anita Court in the Lexington Farms neighborhood. As she was about to investigate, an explosion threw her across the room.
“All there was to do wrong I did, which was to open a door in a smoky environment, which caused an explosion because I supplied it with oxygen.” , she said. âThis flame exploded in my face and sent me back. I have had second degree burns on about 30% of my body.
Doctors told Clark his burns would heal, but the news wasn’t so good for one of his four dogs. Clark said she initially took her two beagles and two chihuahuas out of the house, but one of them, a 5-year-old beagle named Chloe, ran inside after a another dog escaped. Chloe was later found dead inside the house.
âShe had a happy life, a wonderful life, until the last five minutes and she passed away,â Clark said. âThis is how I have to see it.
The other dogs were not injured.
A firefighter was rushed to hospital for treatment for heat exhaustion and was released the same day, according to CFD spokesman Tim Griffin. CFD investigators are still working to determine the exact cause of the fire and explosion. Clark said she believed it started with an electrical fire in a bedroom in the house, which does not use any gas appliances.
Clark, who has owned the house since it was built almost 30 years ago, said it looked like it would be a total loss. She has been living with a friend since the explosion and plans to move to a rental home this weekend until she can return to her long-standing home, either repaired or rebuilt.
âI love this neighborhood. I love my place there on the pond and the fact that I’m backing into beautiful Central Park, âshe said. ” I want to go back there. I have no hard feelings about going back.
After recovering from the ordeal, Clark said she would like to work with the Carmel Fire Department to educate the community on fire safety. She encourages others to conduct fire drills with their families and practice in an emergency.
Clark said she was grateful to the firefighters and medics at CFD for “doing an outstanding job” in responding to the situation. She counts them among the many blessings she has experienced since the explosion.
âIt could have been a lot worse if I had been knocked out by the explosion when the fire hit me. Maybe I wouldn’t, because of the smoke inhalation, âshe said. âMy neighbors were at home providing a phone to call 911. My glasses that I was wearing protected my eyes from burns. My burns are extensive but shallow, and they will heal. I have excellent insurance. It’s a wonderful community, and I have no complaints. My only sadness is losing my dog, that’s all.