Victim identified in NJ house explosion

An explosion destroyed a house in Elizabeth.

- Officials released the name of the man who died in a house explosion in New Jersey. Femi Brown, 24, lived on the second floor of the duplex that was leveled in Wednesday's blast in Elizabeth.

Fifteen people were injured, two critically, when the house at 1031 Magnolia Ave. exploded at about 8 a.m. Wednesday. 

There were no reports of fire caused by the explosion.

An 11-year-old is among the injured who were pulled from the rubble, said police. At least two nearby homes were severely damaged.

Police asked all news helicopters flying overhead to clear the area at about 9:45 a.m. to listen for possible trapped victims.

Speaking to reporters at the scene, Mayor Chris Bollwage said three people had been flown to local hospitals for treatment.

It is not clear what sparked the explosion, but Mayor Bollwage said there were complaints of a natural gas odor in the area earlier in the morning.

A massive fire department, police and emergency personnel response remained at the scene hours later.

Several streets in the area were closed off.

More than a dozen people have been displaced.

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