MOUNT VERNON — Two people were injured Monday morning after an explosion and fire at a Fulton Street residence.

The Mount Vernon Fire Department was called to a house in the 900 block of Fulton Street — across the street from Mount Vernon High School — about 6:15 a.m., said Assistant Fire Chief Bryan Harris.

Two people inside the building escaped the blaze, Harris said. One suffered minor injuries, while the other suffered second-degree burns to about 6% of his body, Harris said. He was taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle for treatment.

“(They were) very lucky to get out,” Harris said. “The explosion was pretty significant.”

The cause of the explosion is under investigation.

Debris from the explosion and resulting fire was found at least as far away as the high school football field, Harris said. Glass that had burst from the building flew at least 100 feet onto the high school’s lawn.

When crews arrived, they determined the flames were fueled by natural gas, Harris said. The flames burned so hot that other buildings nearby were damaged by the heat.

A neighboring four-unit apartment complex was evacuated, he said.

Multiple vehicles and structures were damaged by the explosion, Harris said.

On Monday morning, the Skagit County Sheriff’s Office was using a drone to survey the blast zone to assist with the investigation, he said.

The flames took about half an hour to extinguish, and Cascade Natural Gas was called to turn off the gas, which was leaking from pipes near the destroyed home, even as students were arriving for morning classes, Harris said.

Because of the “hazardous and unpredictable conditions,” the Mount Vernon School District cancelled classes at the high school for the day. Principal Terri Wattawa said she was hopeful classes could resume Tuesday.

The Mount Vernon and Burlington fire departments responded, as did Skagit County fire districts 2 and 3.

— Reporter Kera Wanielista: 360-416-2141,, Twitter: @Kera_SVH,

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