SANTA CLARA – An explosion rattled a neighborhood in Santa Clara Wednesday, when the contents of a garbage can ignited and exploded inside a resident’s garage. Neighbors rushed to extinguish the ensuing fire, and save further property damage.
“We pulled up and both garage doors were blown open with smoke coming out,” neighbor Joe Nutter said. “My boy and I hooked up the hose and climbed underneath the garage door that was blown open, laid on the ground, and put the hose on it (the fire) for a few minutes.”
Nutter, who fortunately has experience as a volunteer fire fighter, was able to extinguish the blaze before the fire department arrived, saving valuable minutes and preventing the fire from spreading to the rest of the house. Two fire engines, Dixie Ambulance units, and members of the gas company arrived shortly after to provide support and make sure the scene was safe.
“He (Nutter) acted very fast,” witness Tiffany Powers said, “jumped out of the car and ran into the garage and put it out.”
The one resident who was in the house at the time, although startled by the explosion, was able to exit the house without injury.
“Residents need to just be careful of what they put in their garbage cans,” Santa Clara Fire Chief Daniel Nelson said. “Don’t put anything hot in garbage cans. Don’t put oily rags in garbage cans. Make sure it’s not going to start a fire before you put it in there.”
The actual cause of the explosion and fire are still under investigation by the Santa Clara Fire Department.
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