Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Blast off

Lordy, another case of how people assume that if you can BUY it, it's "safe". There seems to be this assumption - perhaps because we live in the land of regulation - that Big Brother has a filter in place to protect us where we should in fact be protecting ourselves (not to mention the integrity of our natural environment). We're still somewhere in the vastness between The Jungle and A Brave New World, on our way, perhaps, toward Soylent Green.

Ah, well. A large part of my current job involves addressing urban issues along these lines... Thanks for the article, Carl.

Bug foggers blamed in Galveston house blast

02:16 PM CST on Tuesday, January 22, 2008

By Scott E. Williams

GALVESTON - Six bug foggers detonated inside a house Monday, blasting the roof off and causing what officials called significant structural damage.

Aleiya Hawkins, 8, perches in a tree while she and Angelo Carubba, 7, watch firefighters in front of a home rocked by an explosion.

The blast occurred about 1 p.m. in a small house in the 5400 block of Avenue P1/2. A resident there had left six foggers working inside the house, but apparently had not turned off the pilot lights in the house. The vapor ignited when it reached the kitchen stove's pilot light, fire Batallion Chief B. Streck said.

Gina Carubba, who lives across the street, said, "I thought someone crashed into the porch. That's what it felt like."

Her son and his friend, who were outside playing, saw the flash of the explosion. Carubba said she called 911 after the kids told her about seeing the flash. She said she was afraid it was a gas leak.

No one was inside the home at the time of the explosion, as the residents had gone to a relative's home while the fogger worked, and firefighters reported no injuries.

However, damage to the home was pervasive, and the blast knocked the roof from the house. Although it landed back on top of the house after flying inches into the air, nothing but gravity was keeping it in place.

Streck said people who used foggers for pest control should strictly follow the instructions for the number of foggers needed, depending on a structure's size. He also said anyone using a fogger should put out all pilot lights before activating them

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