Neighbors Of Building Explosion Evacuate To Local School - New York News

Neighbors Of Building Explosion Evacuate To Local School

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Bonnie Cenders' Kia that was right outside the house of explosion Bonnie Cenders' Kia that was right outside the house of explosion
PHILADELPHIA -

The Taggert Elementary School on 4th and Porter has been a haven for those evacuated around the 400 block of Daly Street. The school is three blocks away from the explosion collapse. About 70 homes were evacuated. Many here have been sharing their stories

"I don't know what happened. What I do know is we lost everything just now," says Sekeya Fields.

Sekeya Fields says there's nothing left of her home on 430 Daly Street. Her home was the one next door to the home that's believed to have exploded and collapsed. Her 15-year-old daughter was in her bed when the house crumbled.

"She said she felt like she was in an earthquake. And all the sudden she was in the kitchen. She was in her bed and all the sudden she was in the kitchen," says Sekeya. Shaquorie Fields, her daughter, was taken to the hospital and is now in fair condition.

"I literally got catapulted out of my bed," says another neighbor.

Others who live on the block say the explosion sounded like a bomb.

"There was rubble, and there was smoke. Dust. There was people still struggling to get out of the house. It was still collapsing. There was people still trying to get out of the house. It was still collapsing; there was babies and stuff," says Lauren Mortellite, an evacuee.

Bonnie Cenders says that if she didn't stay at her sister's Daly Street house for one more cup of coffee, she would have been inside her car. Bonnie Cenders' white Kia was destroyed in the building collapse. The car was right outside 428 Daly Street, the center of the mid-day explosion that rocked South Philly.

"There was actually a wall of red and orange fire... it went out and back in," Bashirah Bey, an Evacuee. Bashirah Bey saw one of the victims stumble out of the house.

"You can see the flesh hanging off his body," she remembers.

Many of the evacuees are gathering at Taggert Elementary School, where the Red Cross was busy helping victims find food and shelter. Some still don't know when they'll get back into their homes.

"We don't know how long this shelter is going to be open but you know the Red Cross promise: we will be here as long as families need us," says Judge Renee Hughes, the CEO of the Red Cross.

Right now, about half of the evacuees still remain at the Red Cross shelter. Most belong to the even side of the 400 block, where the building collapse took place.

Residents of Daly Street, still shaken, wonder when they'll be able to get back into their homes.

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