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A man is recovering Friday after a propane gas explosion Thursday morning leveled his home. The man was taken to the Jaycees Burn Center in Chapel Hill, where he is listed in fair condition.

Almost ninety minutes after the initial explosion, responders made a remarkable find. The Beaufort county man’s little dog, Toby, was pulled from the burning rubble surviving with minor injuries.

Authorities say the explosion happened on Boston Avenue in the Beaufort County city of Washington, North Carolina (NC) on Thursday April 2nd around 11:00 am. There is nothing left of the home. The damage to the structure was total. People in the Beaufort community reported hearing the explosion miles away.

Fire Chief Jimmy Davis says their investigation showed the explosion originated in the area of the gas oven. It was originally thought to emanate from the hot water tank.

The victim, James Murray, was first sent to Beaufort County Medical Center and was then transferred to the Jaycee Burn Center in Chapel Hill, North Carolina (NC). Murray’s sister told WITN News that her brother has extensive burns t his head and face.

As mentioned, some ninety minutes after the explosion firefighters managed to pull Murray’s dog Toby out of the rubble, without a scratch. Chief Davis says Toby was buried underneath some of the debris, but will be fine.

If you have been injured in a similar accident and need the help of a lawyer please contact our office. Our firm may be able to help you recover medical expenses and lost wages. Our injury law firm maintains a NE NC office in Elizabeth City, and our main law office is in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Four of our law firm’s injury lawyers are licensed to practice law in North Carolina, Virginia, and beyond. For over a decade we have been helping North Carolina residents, and those suffering injuries or wrongful death in NC.

Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton personal injury law firm is based in Virginia, with offices in northeast NC and Virginia Beach (VA), practicing primarily in the southeastern U.S. and handles only injury law, including car, truck, railroad, and medical negligence cases and more. The firm’s website is:, the firm edits three injury law blogs: Virginia Beach Injuryboard & Norfolk Injuryboard, as well as the Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard and also hosts a video library covering many FAQ’s on personal injury subjects.


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