Explosion of two-story home in Schenectady under investigation

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Updated: 8/11 12:39 pm
SCHENECTADY N.Y. – Authorities remain on location of a two-story home explosion in Schenectady.

The explosion took place at 315 Paige Street around 2:30 p.m. Sunday afternoon.

The home is said to be vacant building, but Paige Street residents say they have seen people going in and out of the house.

Due to the neighbor's sightings, New York State Search and Rescue Teams have used K-9 units to search the destroyed building for victims. According to the police commissioner no one has been found at this time.

Officials quickly evacuated six of the nearby homes. Some residents have yet to be allowed back into their house, and are unsure when they will be allowed to return.

According to authorities the origin and cause of the explosion is unknown at this time.

Thomas Batcher says he was cooking food when debris shot through his living room. Batcher later learned the blast he had heard was from an explosion of a nearby home.

"It was scary the whole house shook. I just heard a loud explosion and the glass from the widows went flying through the house," said Batcher.

Schenectady Deputy Fire Chief Vincent Krawiecki says he felt the powerful burst as well. "We felt it two streets down at Station One we felt the building rock,” said the deputy chief.

Homes nearby the explosion were damaged as well.

"Every single window on that side of the house is blown in. There is debris from both our homes now in our living rooms hallways," said Luis Nazario, a resident nearby the Schenectady blast.

Neighbors say they had smelled a presence of heavy gas in the area for some time. Residents were upset, claiming they had called National Grid about a gas issue and the company which is responsible for distribution of electricity and natural gas responded before the explosion Sunday.

According to a National Grid spokesperson all calls are recorded and none were received about a smell of gas at the Paige Street location. National Grid also says crews were not dispatched to the location of the explosion before Sunday's event.

Schenectady police will be holding a press conference Monday morning about the explosion.

For more on Sundays blast check back with fox23news.com for updates as they become available.

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