A community mourns after an explosion claims five lives in Salem. Officials say 11 people were in the house when it exploded just after noon on Wednesday. Six were injured, two died in area hospitals and three died at the scene. Friends and family put together a memorial in their honor. Our C.J. Spang talked to family members on the scene as investigators continue to look for a cause.
SALEM, N.Y. -- Driving on Route 29 to Greenwich, Rodney Moore nearly got caught in the house explosion.
"When I got by that house, I noticed there was a guy looking in the cellar window, which is kind of scary now. Got past the house, thought I heard thunder, car shook a little bit, saw the wires moving. Ten seconds later, I would have been blown away," said Rodney Moore, owner of Bob's Lunch.
Moore owns Bob's Lunch, which is about a quarter mile from the scene.
"I called the diner. They said the windows (shook). They saw the wires on the pole up over there moving back and forth. It knocked one of the waitresses into the counter it was so forceful," Moore said.
More than a mile away, the Nu You Hair Salon actually shook because of the explosion.
"We were here working and you heard this loud boom. The door opened and slammed shut. I came outside 'cause it felt like somebody hit the building. It went down then back up again," said Krista Gregg.
The blast killed five people and injured six more. It also rocked the whole town.
"This is devastating for the community, but you never imagine something like this happening in Salem. This is just something beyond what we experience," Moore said.
But Moore expects the community to help the family through these tough times.
"When there's trouble in the neighborhood, the whole town pulls together and helps each other out of these situations," said Moore.
State police are still investigating and have not determined an official cause of the explosion.