Woman dead, man fighting for life after gas bottle explosion

A gas bottle has exploded inside a unit on the state’s mid-north coast, killing a woman, 32, and injuring a man.

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Police said the explosion and fire was caused when a lighter was used on a stove inside a block of units on Little Street in Forster at 9.30pm yesterday.

The woman in the unit died at the scene after suffering severe injuries.

The man, 45, suffered serious burns and was flown to Royal North Shore Hospital for treatment, where he is now in a critical condition.

Manning-Great Lakes Acting Commander Peter McKenna said it appeared the defacto couple was squatting in a vacant block of units that had no electricity connected.

“Witnesses heard someone screaming for help – it appears that was the 45-year-old male was out the front of the units, and he had severe burns all over his body,” Acting Commander McKenna said.

“It took a number of attempts to get in, but police were forced back by smoke. Police found the female deceased inside.”

Forensic investigators had determined the fire began when a lighter was used to turn on a stove, causing an LPG gas bottle to explode.

The man gave an initial report to police, which is consistent with the result of the forensic investigation.

Any witnesses who haven’t already spoken to police should contact Forster Police or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.

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