MONTGOMERY COUNTY, Texas -- Investigators are looking into what caused an explosion that leveled a home and injured three people north of Conroe early Tuesday.

Several hours later neighbors said it was a miracle that anyone survived, but the search continued for one of the family s seven dogs.

The explosion and fire was reported just before 5 a.m. in the 5500 block of Mandy Lane in Willis.

We heard a big noise, said Joseph Turner, a neighbor. Our house shook.

Turner and other neighbors rushed to the scene to help the family who had just moved in six months ago.

We walked out here, saw the lady, got her a chair, Turner said. She was screaming for her husband. She didn t know where he was.

The husband, he came crawling out of the debris, and he was laying on the edge of the road, said neighbor Sheree Akins.

They found him crawling under the flames and stuff. It was pretty bad, said Turner.

The brother was up and walking around, and I got him to lie down, said Akins.

All were clearly in pain after the explosion, which sparked two fires and threw debris into nearby trees.

... So burned that nobody wanted to touch them, said neighbor Lesley Mason. It was hard to touch them. They didn t want to be touched, but we had to get them out of there.

Two Life Flight helicopters took three patients to the Memorial Hermann Texas Trauma Institute.

As of 5 p.m. Tuesday, one of the victims was still listed in critical condition. Another was in serious condition and the third was treated and released.

At least five of the family s seven dogs survived the explosion. One died and another was still missing at last check. Neighbors are caring for the dogs.

The county s fire chief told KHOU 11 News that some of his firefighters heard the explosion at their homes five to six miles away.

The debris field extended about 600 feet from the blast site.

Everything she worked for just blew up in 5 seconds, Turner said. I couldn t imagine that.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives was looking over the scene in the hours after the incident.

According to the Montgomery County Fire Department, the home had a 250-gallon propane tank. A cause for the blast has not yet been determined, however.


View more photos from the scene

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