Home Explosion That Injured Mayport Woman, Destroyed Three Buildings Declared Accidental

| May 31, 2019

CLARION CO., Pa. (EYT) – Authorities say a home explosion that left one woman hospitalized and tore through multiple structures in Clarion County late Tuesday night was determined to be accidental in nature.

(Photos by Dave Cyphert of ProPoint Media Photography)

According to a press release from Ridgway-based State Police Fire Marshal Russell Stewart, the fire occurred around 10:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 28, at a residence located at 2358 Pine Run Road in Redbank Township, Clarion County.

Police say 68-year-old Donna Kemmer was in bed at the residence when she heard a loud explosion and found herself buried under a wall. Kemmer was then able to free herself and drive to a neighbor’s residence for assistance.

She was transported to a Pittsburgh area hospital by Clarion Hospital EMS.


According to Trooper Russell, the investigation determined that the fire-explosion originated in the basement of the residence from migrating natural gas and has been classified as accidental.

The residence, a garage, and a greenhouse structure were all determined to be a complete loss, with damages estimated at between $1.5 and $2 million, according to police.

Hawthorn Area Volunteer Fire Department, New Bethlehem Fire Company #1, Summerville Volunteer Fire Department, and Limestone Township Volunteer Fire Company were initially dispatched to the scene. Hawthorn Area Volunteer Fire Department Fire Chief Curt Kiehl then also requested tankers from Ringgold Area Volunteer Fire Company and Corsica Volunteer Fire Company.

Firefighters cleared the scene around 1:39 p.m. on Wednesday, May 29, while Kiehl, Marshal Stewart, and representatives of TC Energy remained at the property to continue their investigation.

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