Birmingham & Black Country

Man dead after explosion and fire at house in Penn

The house
Image caption The house remained boarded up on Tuesday

A man's body has been discovered following an explosion and fire at a house in Wolverhampton.

Emergency crews were called to the family home in Rylands Drive, Penn, at 15:15 GMT on Tuesday. Search crews found the body of the man, who is being named locally as Avtar Dhensa.

Neighbours were evacuated from their homes for several hours.

A gas leak has been ruled out as the cause of the explosion, West Midlands Fire Service said.

Updates on this story and more from the Black Country

About 15 firefighters were sent to the cul-de-sac along with police and the air ambulance.

Image caption Neighbours had to leave their homes for several hours on Tuesday evening
Image caption The damage to the home is visible in daylight on Tuesday
Image caption Neighbour Jack Hurdiss said he joined other residents at the top of Rylands Drive

The fire affected a bedroom and spread to loft space, fire crews said.

A cordon of about 100m was set up, with neighbours unable to return to their homes until late on Tuesday evening.

Neighbour Jack Hurdiss said: "Someone came to the door and they said just stay put for a bit, and 10 to 15 minutes later someone came back and said that we should go to the top of the road and everyone who lives in Rylands was up there."

Fire investigators have been at the scene.

Simon Hardimann, from West Midlands Fire Service, ruled out a gas leak.

"The cause of the explosion, we've looked at all ignition sources including gas, and we can confirm at this time, we've worked with our partners from National Grid who've confirmed it was not a gas leak."

West Midlands Police said the incident was not suspicious and the death has been referred to the coroner.

Image copyright WMFS
Image caption Emergency crews were alerted at about 15:15 GMT on Tuesday

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