An illegal burn inside a swimming pool caused an explosion that shook several homes in a southeast Topeka neighborhood Wednesday night.
The explosion and subsequent fire happened around 9:30 p.m. in the 3700 block of SE 25th Street.
Shawnee Heights Fire District Battalion Chief Rick Deibert says residents were burning trash and debris inside an in-ground swimming pool behind their home. The residents did not have a burning permit.
Deibert says it wasn’t immediately clear what inside the pool caused the explosion.
Neighbors say the residents have been filling the pool with building materials and trash for the last five years.
Billy Boltz says he believes the pool contained fencing materials, wood from an old deck and other items that have accumulated over the years.
Boltz, who lives across the street from the home, ran outside when he heard the explosion.
He told WIBW News Now that he saw one resident standing outside watching the fire before another came out and told the quickly growing crowd of bystanders that everything was OK.
Deibert says no one was injured in the explosion that could be felt as far north as SE 6th and Croco and by people near 37th and Croco to the south.
There were no damages reported to any surrounding homes.
Fire crews were able to contain the blaze to the pool and had the scene cleared within two hours.