POMPANO BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) - Residents of a Pompano Beach neighborhood breathed a sigh of relief after a propane canister flew into several of their homes without harming anyone.
Pompano Beach Fire Rescue units responded to the scene along the 2800 block of Northwest Fourth Court, Friday evening.
Crews confirmed the object that hit the residences was a now empty gas tank.
Ben Thomas, whose sister is one of the homeowners affected, got a chance to watch a neighbor’s surveillance video of the moment the canister came crashing into the property.
“They called 911 and said they’d seen something falling from the sky,” said an area resident.
“There it is. You see it? Woo!” said Thomas.
Fortunately, no one was home at the time.
Thomas later inspected his sister’s home for damage.
“I mean, it’s a hot mess. These shingles been knocked off. The roof is busted,” he said.
7News cameras captured a blue tarp covering the home that was affected.
“I’m looking at an explosion that didn’t ignite fully. With the potential that it has, I’m glad it didn’t catch on fire,” said Thomas.
However, it left a hole in part of the roof and damaged other homes.
Surveillance video shows the canister as it barreled into a fence and tore down shingles before it spun around and spread natural gas as it went down.
Thomas said he has never seen an incident like this happen before.
“You can smell the stuff. That’s why I have a mask on,” he said.
Thomas said the structure only sustained external damage, and he will make some repairs within a week.
Pablo Bautista, an employee with the gas company AmeriGas, came out to collect the container.
“He says it’s not hazardous at this time, I guess because it’s empty,” said Thomas.
When asked where he thinks the tank came from, Bautista replied, “I have no idea.”
However, the AmeriGas employee said the tank had the power to ignite a dangerous and potentially deadly situation.
“That tank, I believe, is 40 gallons. An explosion could have taken at least five houses,” he said.
AmeriGas crews capped and carted off the tank to a safe recycling area.
It appears that the tank likely came from a few houses down.
Bautista said industrial gas tanks like this one are used in the medical field, and he’s not exactly sure why it would be in a residential neighborhood.
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