BREMERTON, Wash. (AP)/SEATTLE (CBS) — An explosion demolished part of a Motel 6 in Bremerton, across Puget Sound west of Seattle, on Tuesday night — just minutes after the acting hotel manager had evacuated the building because of a gas leak.
Three people were missing after the explosion, but one of the individuals managed to call police from another location. As of Wednesday morning, two people remain unaccounted for.
Manager Tonya Hinds said in a telephone interview that a passerby had come into her office to say a gas line was leaking at the back of the building. Hinds — a former volunteer firefighter — said she went outside and saw that the leaking line was a big one “with a lot of gas.”
“I pulled the alarm and started corralling people away from the building,” Hinds said. “I wanted to make sure all my guests were out.”
Hinds said the motel had about 65 guests in 42 occupied rooms, and the blast destroyed about one-quarter of the building. She said that one guest reported having seen someone jump out a window of the three-story establishment and land on or near the gas line just before the leak.
According to KIRO, police reported firefighters on the scene were blown back 20 feet by the explosion.
A Seattle Times reporter who was at the scene soon after the blast posted a photo on Twitter showing one end of the motel collapsed.
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