Residents spared injuries, but have many worries following fiery explosion at KC apartments

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- A fiery explosion after a stolen car crashed into gas meters left many people without a place to call home on Tuesday night. The commotion began when police tried to arrest five men in connection to a home burglary.

When one of them tried to avoid arrest, he spun out and hit an apartment on the east side, striking a panel of gas meters. Flames raged on for more than an hour, and there was nothing Beatrice Willingham could do but look on.

Everything she had was gone.

“I’m just shocked. My thoughts are everywhere. I’m nervous,” she said.

Her only peace of mind was knowing her five kids weren’t home when it all started. The driver of a burgundy car slammed into the gas meters right outside Willingham’s apartment.

Police confirmed an explosion happened only a couple of minutes after the car was pulled away.

Officers followed two cars into the neighborhood in the 2000 block of Wheeling Avenue. Police say the cars were stolen from a recent home burglary, and recovered the items stolen. Police also arrested four men, but one man is still at large.

It’s the damage left behind that families are worrying about now.

Everyone was slowly reunited. The ATA showed up to provide warmth for families waiting for help. After Willingham was reunited with her children, she connected with the Red Cross.