911 recordings released in Ewing Township explosion

Police have released the tapes of 911 calls in the immediate aftermath of the Ewing Township blast.
March 11, 2014 5:52:32 AM PDT
Police have released the tapes of 911 calls recorded in the immediate aftermath of the Ewing Township blast that killed one person and injured several others.

In the recordings some of the callers sound frantic, while others seem confused. But it shows just how scary a situation it was for those directly impacted.

In one of the calls a woman tells the 911 operator, "A house just blew up! Something just blew up!"

The explosion destroyed nearly a dozen homes, and dozens more were damaged.

A subcontractor for PSE&G, Henkels and McCoy, was doing work at the South Fork Development last Tuesday when something went terribly wrong, and a gas line was damaged.

The explosion startled residents, and the ripple effect was extensive. Call after call inundated the 911 Call Center.

"The whole house is gone. I don't know if there are people inside or not. It's an apartment complex, lots of fire and damage," said one caller.

On another call, an elderly woman broke down in tears. She said she struggled to get around with a walker. The fear in her voice was heart-wrenching.

"I don't want you to panic yourself. Listen to me. Calm down. Take a deep breath," the 911 operator is heard saying.

When the smoke cleared, one woman, Linda Cerratelli, had died. More than a half dozen others suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Officials say the cleanup will take months. For residents, the sight of debris and destruction is a painful reminder of the blast.

"I'm nervous and shaky. It's always in my face because of where I live - right outside my window," said one neighbor, Jenny Roth.

Meanwhile, PSE&G issued a statement saying it would not comment further until the investigation is completed.


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