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April 14, 2014 at 11:38 AM

1 injured in blast at Aurora Avenue North motel

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Investigators are trying to determine the cause of the explosion that critically injured a man this morning at the Klose-In Motel. Photo by Mark Harrison / The Seattle Times

A man was critically injured this morning when a natural-gas explosion destroyed a room at a motel on Aurora Avenue North, according to the Seattle Fire Department.

Police and fire personnel responded to the Klose-In Motel at 9309 Aurora Ave. N., after the explosion just before 11:30 a.m., said Kyle Moore, a spokesman for the Seattle Fire Department.

The victim, a man in his 40s, was taken to Harborview Medical Center in critical condition after being burned in the explosion. Residents of the motel said the victim was blown out of his unit and was found rolling around in pain.

Resident Rick Machado said the explosion sounded “like a plane crashing.”

The motel was evacuated, and firefighters are assessing the structural integrity of the motel, Moore said. A total of 41 people have been displaced by the explosion and are being assisted by the Red Cross.

Investigators said the blast was caused by natural gas. Damage to the building is estimated at $50,000.

Comments | More in The Blotter | Topics: explosion, motel, Seattle Fire Department

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