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November 12, 2013- Erie County Sheriff Timothy B. Howard reports that the investigation into the cause of an explosion that destroyed a house yesterday at 7745 Berghorn Road in the Town Newstead is continuing.

 The incident was first reported to the Sheriff’s Office at 5:27 AM by a motorist who was driving on Berghorn Road, and noticed that debris and pieces of the house were in the roadway.  Several neighbors were interviewed, who reported hearing a muffled “boom” at about 2:00 AM, and it is believed that this was the time that the explosion occurred.

 The Newstead Fire Company was dispatched, and they responded under the direction of Chief Scott Zitzka, to ensure that the fire was out.

 The residence was undergoing remodeling, and was unoccupied at the time of the explosion.  No one was injured at the time or during the subsequent investigation.

 The investigation into the cause of the explosion is being conducted by Detectives Shaun Hediger and Steven Meerboth and Deputy Scott Kuhlmey, of the Erie County Sheriff’s Office Fire Investigation Unit.  They were assisted at the scene by Deputy Daniel Walczak, who commands the Sheriff’s Office Bomb Squad.  Also assisting at the scene were agents from the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, who provided technical assistance.

 All indications are that the explosion was caused by a propane leak into the residence.  The investigation is continuing, in an effort to determine what ignited the propane and caused the explosion.