One of six residents unaccounted for as body found in ruins
RAFE ARNOTT/METRO VANCOUVER
Firefighters pulled an unidentified body from the remains of a Richmond home yesterday after it was gutted by a massive explosion.
The father of a man who lived in the home, and who hadn’t been heard from, wiped away tears as firefighters doused the smouldering wreckage.
Jim, who did not give his last name, said he lives across the street from his son, Michael, 44, on Alexandra Road.
Just before 10 p.m. on Monday night he heard an explosion and rushed outside to see his son’s home engulfed in flames.
Five of the six residents have been accounted for — all but Michael.
Jim said he’d heard a rumour someone had threatened one of the people who lived in the house. He didn’t know why, nor did he know the other residents.
"If a person wanted to burn the house down, they’ve done it," he said.
Anthony Landry, who lives two doors away, said when he heard the explosion he thought a plane had crashed.
"You couldn’t see the house for the fire."
He added he’s not surprised this happened on his street, which he said is home to some "less than reputable people."
A seventh man, who has serious burns, was taken to hospital from a nearby location around the time of the explosion, Richmond RCMP Corp. Nycki Basra said.
"He’s not one of the six (residents)," she said. "How and when he got burned is still being determined."
It’s still uncertain what caused the fire. Some tenants said there were propane and acetylene tanks in the basement.