Hobbs man survives Skelly Street explosion, neighbors shaken by - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Hobbs man survives Skelly Street explosion, neighbors shaken by blast

Victor Dominguez's relatives surveyed the damage Wednesday afternoon and said they were "shocked and grateful" he survived. (Source: KWES) Victor Dominguez's relatives surveyed the damage Wednesday afternoon and said they were "shocked and grateful" he survived. (Source: KWES)
Shards of glass and debris littered the street. (Source: KWES) Shards of glass and debris littered the street. (Source: KWES)
The structure likely collapsed from the force of the blast "within less than a second," according to Hobbs investigators. (Source: KWES) The structure likely collapsed from the force of the blast "within less than a second," according to Hobbs investigators. (Source: KWES)
Victor Dominguez, the lone occupant of the destroyed house, crawled out with non-life threatening injuries, relatives said. (Source: KWES) Victor Dominguez, the lone occupant of the destroyed house, crawled out with non-life threatening injuries, relatives said. (Source: KWES)
A sudden, unexplained explosion leveled a house Tuesday night in the 400 block of West Skelly Street, authorities said. (Source: KWES) A sudden, unexplained explosion leveled a house Tuesday night in the 400 block of West Skelly Street, authorities said. (Source: KWES)
HOBBS, NM (KWES) -

A Hobbs man "miraculously" survived an explosion that leveled his house Tuesday night in the 400 block of West Skelly Street, officials said.

Relatives identified him as Victor Dominguez, 44, and confirmed the blast left him with non-life threatening injuries including a broken arm and fractured rib.

"We saw the photo [of the destroyed house] on Facebook and I instantly recognized his work truck [parked outside]," said Zayda Dominguez, his sister. "Seeing [something like that], you fear the worst."

She and her family rushed to Hobbs from their home in Roswell and were speechless when they arrived at the scene of destruction. 

The building's wood frame collapsed in the explosion; concrete foundation blocks were blasted apart; flattened furniture in the bedroom area resembled wood chips; and shards of glass from shattered windows landed in yards on the other side of the street.

"It has to be a miracle... that he didn't die," said Dominguez.

Her daughter, 11-year-old Lupita Dominguez, was unfazed by the structural damage and material loss.

"I'm just thankful that my Tio wasn't [badly] hurt because it could have been worse," she said. "I'm just really, really thankful."

Neighbors within a one-mile radius reported hearing the blast Tuesday around 11:45 p.m. and feeling their homes shake.

"It felt like an earthquake," one woman said. "We heard the dishes in the kitchen rattle... I got up to check on my sleeping kids. It was very scary."

The explosion sounded "like a bomb," according to another West Skelly resident, and sent neighbors running in every direction.

Firefighters stationed more than five miles from the scene said they also heard the blast.

Investigators surveyed the scene Wednesday afternoon and said the incident "was very bizarre" because the explosion occurred without being accompanied by flames.

"You're talking about a real rarity," said Hobbs Fire Marshal Shawn Williams. "You don't see it too often, where it blows up without also starting a fire."

Officials had not yet identified the cause of the explosion Wednesday night, but revealed a natural gas leak may have played a role.

"We haven't ruled anything out," said fire investigator Andrew Gonzales. "We're still doing an investigation to see if any other forms of fuel [were present] that could have caused an explosion."

No additional homes or residents are believed to be in danger, authorities confirmed Wednesday.

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