Multiple explosions in Willowbrook possibly connected to chemical in sewer: police chief

WILLOWBROOK, Ill. --Authorities trying to find the source that sparked several explosions in Willowbrook.

One woman was hurt in an explosion in a laundry room in a condo complex Friday morning.

Investigators say that may be linked to two other explosions in homes elsewhere in the suburb.

Residents say there was a strong smell of gas and that firefighters paid several visits to the apartment building Thursday night.

"The fire department conducting the investigation determined there was some kind of volatile petroleum or gasoline product in the sanitary sewer that triggered the explosion," Willowbrook Police Chief Robert Pavelchik said.

The chief says the fire crews have gone door-to-door at the complex, to make sure all gas products and electricity have been turned off. He says the power in the building has been turned off.

A community alert has been sent out telling people who smell a strong odor -- ventilate, turn of ignition sources and call 9-1-1 immediately.

The chief added if there is, in fact, a strong chemical in the sewer, then there is concern for not only the apartment complex, but the entire area surrounding.