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Officials probe Austintown house blast

Published: Tue, May 14, 2013 @ 12:05 a.m.

Staff report


A vacant house at 2196 S. Turner Road exploded shortly after 8 p.m. Sunday, the result of vandalism, a fire official suspects.

“It looks like someone was trying to steal some copper,” said Andy Frost III, Austintown Township fire chief. “They broke off the gas line, and gas filled the house.”

Frost said the “muffled explosion” blew the house off its foundation, but that it didn’t catch anything on fire. No one was injured.

According to the Mahoning County Auditor’s website, the home was built in 1979 and valued at $82,550, with the owner listed as Fred Shutrump III.

Similar incidents have happened before in the township, Frost said. The last one occurred maybe 18 months ago.

“Stealing gas lines is an ongoing problem, and we have to deal with it,” he said.

Police and fire officials are investigating the explosion.

“We’ll know a lot more in the next couple of days,” Frost said.


1123goz(580 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Too bad the perps were not inside.

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21970mach1(1005 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I think gas lines are steel not copper. I would think those lines would only worth a couple dollars .

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3zz3(931 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I just can't believe someone can get into a house do all this work with nobody seeing or hearing a thing???? I also have heard people say that they heard nobody stealing the siding off of the house 10' away?? We have to be more aware and take action. I agree its too bad they were not inside, although with our justice system they would probably sue the crap out of the homeowner and win for creating a dangerous situation for the self employed

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