Residents Risk Possible Explosion Near Plymouth to Stay at Home - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Residents Risk Possible Explosion Near Plymouth to Stay at Home

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Monday's explosion at the pipeline facility near Plymouth led to the evacuation of hundreds of people within a two-mile radius of the plant. Monday's explosion at the pipeline facility near Plymouth led to the evacuation of hundreds of people within a two-mile radius of the plant.

PLYMOUTH, WA - Monday's explosion at the pipeline facility near Plymouth led to the evacuation of hundreds of people within a two-mile radius of the plant. Those evacuation orders were eventually lifted Tuesday afternoon.

"We just packed a bag and headed out the door, about the time they came knocking and told us we needed to evacuate. We were ready to go," said Gay Schefsterom who lives just outside the one mile radius.

Gay Schefsterom is just one of hundreds of people who evacuated their homes after the explosion at the Natural Gas Storage facility near Plymouth. She and her family stayed in a motel overnight after authorities initiated a 2-mile evacuation order. That order was eventually reduced down to 1-mile.

At that time residents were told they could go back to their homes, but there still was the potential for an explosion.

"Last night, if you wanted to get back in, you had to sign an agreement stating that you were entering at your own risk and that you knew there were risks involved," she said.

David Gomez lives down the street from Schefsterom and well within the 1-mile radius. He says he decided to take the risk to look after his mother who suffers from a stomach disease.

"She feels a lot more comfortable at home where I have taken and retro-fitted the house, so it's handicap-accessible," Gomez said.

Gomez  says he never felt his life was in danger, but the smell of the gas was definitely noticeable.

"I came out about 10 o'clock to have a cigarette and I could smell the gas and thought I should put this out," he said.

Authorities warned the liquefied natural gas could pose health issues including nausea and difficulty breathing. Residents were also told the gas was explosive.

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