Fire, Explosion Force Evacuation Of 2 Marshalltown Homes

MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa (AP) — An early-morning house fire and subsequent explosion Thursday in Marshalltown forced the evacuation of two homes, authorities there said.

The fire was reported around 2:15 a.m. Thursday, and police arrived to see flames coming from one home, officials said. Within minutes, an explosion occurred that intensified the fire and spread the flames to a home next door, authorities said.

Officers were able to alert the occupants of the second home and get them safely out of the house. Firefighters later confirmed that the occupants of both houses were safe. Both homes suffered extensive damage, according to reports.

Authorities are investigating the cause of the fire and explosion.