January 14, 1995 in Washington Voices

Propane Explosion Rocks Trailer, Jolts Neighbors

Alison Boggs Staff Writer
 

Propane leaking from a tank ignited and caused an explosion felt throughout a Spokane Valley trailer park on Thursday morning.

“It was just a big boom,” said Ila Courtright, a resident of the Trailer Inns Trailer Park, E6021 Fourth.

No one was injured.

Valley Fire District responded to the call about 10 a.m. Inspectors said propane had leaked into the trailer from a tank outside. Propane is heavier than air, so the explosion blew out the lower half of the trailer, said inspector Paul Chase.

“The biggest concentration (of propane) will settle at lower levels,” Chase said.

Aluminum siding was blown off the tiny yellowish trailer at space No. 85. Shards of glass were scattered about the parking lot. Pages were blackened on books that lay in the debris outside.

The explosion caused about $2,000 worth of damage to the trailer and its contents, Chase said.

“I smelled (the gas) way over there,” said resident Karen Clark, pointing to her trailer across the parking lot. “I felt the pressure of the explosion push into my trailer.”

The trailer space is rented to Rich Teraceno, Chase said, but he has not been found yet.

Clark said the man who used to live in the trailer moved out three months ago and gave the key to two teenagers.

Jailed man’s home burglarized

The home of a Valley man in jail on federal charges has been burglarized twice since Jan. 1.

Robert J. Adams, 24, E4502 Fourth, is being held in Spokane County Jail on two counts of possession of a pipe bomb.

A contractor working in Adams’ house said the home was entered at least twice between Jan. 1 and 4, said sheriff’s Lt. Clyde Ries.

On Jan. 4, the burglars dumped trash all over the house, the contractor told deputies.

The garage door and back door of the house were kicked in and there were pry marks around one of the doors, Ries said. It’s unclear if anything is missing from the house.

Teen charged with car prowling

A teenager was arrested on five different charges after sheriff’s deputies picked him up near three cars that had been prowled.

James P. Schnebly, 18, of N1615 Union, was charged with three counts of car prowling, being a minor in possession of alcohol and obstructing a law officer, said Lt. Clyde Ries.

Deputy Mark Nygren saw Schnebly walking near S917 Bowdish about 1:49 a.m. Tuesday. At the driveway of the same address, Nygren found the gloveboxes of three cars had been rifled through, Ries said.

At 2 a.m., Nygren saw Schnebly running near Fourth and Bowdish. Schnebly’s jacket was dirty, and Nygren said he smelled alcohol on the teenager’s breath.

When Nygren put Schnebly in his patrol car, the suspect became belligerent, called him names, and refused to cooperate, Ries said.

Schnebly was booked into Spokane County Jail.

Four injured in car accident

A vehicle rollover in Liberty Lake on Wednesday sent four teenagers to the hospital.

A 16-year-old girl was driving on Liberty Lake Road about 1:44 p.m. when she lost control of her car and it rolled over into a ditch, Valley Fire District reported.

The driver and three companions, two girls, 13 and 16, and a boy, 15, crawled out of the car and walked about a half-mile to a gas station where they called for help.

All four suffered cuts and bruises. They were taken to Valley Hospital and Medical Center, where they were treated and released.

None of the teens was wearing a seat belt.

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