Debate Over Gas Pipe Safety Reignited

Lightning Strike Fires Reignite Debate Over Gas Pipe Safety
Ross and Meg Rushing were entertaining a friend at their brand-new home in Lubbock, Texas, on Aug. 24, 2012, when a clap of thunder appeared to set off their burglar alarm.

Unable to turn it off, Ross Rushing and his friend, Brennen Teel, went to the garage to get a ladder so they could disable the system.

“That’s when the explosion happened,” Rushing recalled. “Honestly, I thought I was dead immediately.”

Rushing was able to climb out from under the buckled garage door, but couldn’t locate Teel in the thick black smoke that was now pouring from the home.

Firefighters later found his body at the rear of the garage. Investigators believe he opened the drop-down attic staircase, not realizing the attic was ablaze. Oxygen rushed in, causing a back-draft explosion that killed the 31-year-old Teel, a resident of Heath, Texas, they said.

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