Authorities Monday said an explosion that rocked a Valley Glen house and sent two people to hospitals was likely caused by equipment used in a home marijuana-growing operation.
The explosion that severely damaged the home and leveled the garage was reported at 9:26 p.m. Sunday at 12751 W. Archwood St.
Seven people were inside the home when the blast occurred, including a 59-year-old man who was taken to a hospital with critical burn injuries, Los Angeles Fire Department spokeswoman Margaret Stewart said.
Firefighters dug a 46-year-old man out of the debris. He was taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, according to the LAFD, which reported that another man suffered minor injuries but declined treatment and a 65-year-old woman and three children were unhurt. A woman from a neighboring home was evaluated for injuries but declined transport to a hospital, Stewart said.
Firefighters discovered the second injured man while searching through shoulder-deep debris, she said.
They started sifting through debris after a firefighter heard a tapping sound and they used a chain saw to clear some of the debris around him, Stewart said.
The residence was red-tagged by the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety, Stewart said. Thirteen homes surrounding the area of the explosion were requested to evacuate and seven homes sustained varying levels of damage from debris, but none were determined unsafe for occupancy.
An LAFD statement released Monday morning said a “preliminary examination determined the explosion was not caused from a gas leak or a THC extraction lab. The inspection did find evidence of marijuana being grown in the garage area and that is part of the active investigation.”
It was not immediately known what equipment may have caused the explosion, though fertilizer or lighting equipment could have been a contributing factor, said LAFD spokesman Brian Humphrey.
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