RAPHO TOWNSHIP – An explosion at a Rapho Township, Lancaster County, storage building in the 900 block of Colebrook Road destroyed the structure and heavily damaged some nearby homes, but no injuries were reported. Officials say six employees were coming to work, but one smelled gas while entering. Emergency responders were called at about 5:50 a.m. Wednesday, but an explosion occurred soon afterward. Supervisor Jere Swarr says the building was used to store five trucks, graders, and other roadwork equipment. Emergency management officials say the nearby municipal building was also damaged. A State Police Fire Marshal is investigating the cause of the blast. The Central PA Chapter of the American Red Cross is assisting those who are displaced from their homes. The Red Cross provided those families with emergency assistance for temporary lodging, food, clothing, and other immediate needs. In the days and weeks ahead, Red Cross caseworkers will continue to help the impacted residents. Yesterday, the Red Cross supported an evacuation center at East Fairview Church of the Brethren in the immediate aftermath of the explosion. Anyone in need of Red Cross assistance should call 1-800-733-2767.

Photo: Elizabethtown Fire Dept. Station 74