After a “report of smoke conditions” on Saturday, firefighters responded to buildings along East Alameda Avenue and were “looking for danger” when the explosion occurred, officials said on Twitter.
Two people were taken to hospital and their injuries were not life-threatening. A third victim was taken to another hospital, but the Aurora Fire and Rescue Service did not detail their condition.
The cause of the explosion is unknown.
“There was an explosion on the west side of the building, causing extensive damage,” the Aurora Fire Department said Saturday afternoon. Authorities found “structural damage” as a result, but officials were still working to determine the extent and severity of the damage.
“I heard it so loud I said, ‘Don’t look back, don’t look back, just keep walking,'” Goodwin told the station. “It’s like, ‘I don’t want to see what happened.'”
In the short term, residents have been relocated to local shelters with the help of the Red Cross, Aurora Fire and Rescue Service said. “If necessary, long-term accommodation will be arranged through the (Red Cross).”
Community members are asked to stay away from the building.