Propane blast kills woman in Arundel home


A propane gas tank exploded in Anne Arundel County, killing a 74-year-old woman and injuring her husband.

The blast occurred yesterday evening and leveled a two-story Cape Cod house at 623 Opel Road in the Stone Haven community, said Capt. Michael Schaal, of the Anne Arundel County Fire Department.

"It was big enough to destroy the entire house," Schaal said. "We don't know what the source of the leak was or the igniting source."

The body of Martha Budzynski was found in the living room. Her husband, Edward Budzynski, 74, was found on the front lawn. "We believe he got thrown out" by the force of the blast, Schaal said.

Edward Budzynski received head and leg injuries and was treated at North Arundel Hospital, Schaal said.

His wife had no heartbeat when firefighters arrived, Schaal said.

Schaal said the house, which was equipped for propane gas service, is too unstable for immediate investigation: "We can't get inside. It's not safe to go inside."

Meanwhile, an investigation continues and the house will be bulldozed soon to try to find the origin of the explosion, he said.

Twenty-five firefighters responded to douse the resulting one-alarm fire. Adjoining homes did not have to be evacuated.

The explosion is believed to have caused at least $200,000 in damage.

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