IHM Opens Doors To Apartment Evacuees

Los Alamos County Emergency Manager Bev Simpson, right, speaks with Red Cross Disaster Program Manager Claire Ryan Monday afternoon at the temporary shelter set up inside Karen McLaughlin Parish Hall at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church. The Catholic Church on Canyon Road opened its doors to residents forced to evacuate following an early morning explosion at Caballo Peak Apartments. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Red Cross arrives at Karen McLaughlin Parish Hall at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church Monday to assist evacuees from the Caballo Peak Apartments. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

By CAROL A. CLARK
Los Alamos Daily Post

Residents at Caballo Peak Apartment were evacuated early Monday morning following an explosion inside unit 11 at 3100 Canyon Road.

Fr. Glenn Jones opened the doors of Karen McLaughlin Parish Hall at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church to assist the evacuees.

Los Alamos Police Chief Dino Sgambellone told the Los Alamos Daily Post that Emergency Manager Bev Simpson did an excellent job coordinating with the church and the American Red Cross to assist the evacuees.

The Red Cross volunteers handed out water and information to residents throughout the day until they were allowed to return home at 4:30 p.m., Monday.

The Caballo Peak Apartments are owned by Jim Hall and his son Marcus Hall, who manages the complex.

“We really commend all those involved for working together to help get the residents back in their homes in less than 24 hours,” Hall said. “It was just great to see the excellent cooperation between the county, police, fire, Red Cross and the church.”

Hall explained that the force of the explosion caused a water pipe to burst inside unit 11. The water to the entire building had to be shut off until responders could get inside that unit and turn off its water supply.

County building inspectors were called out to assess possible structual damage to the building, which was primarily contained to unit 11, and the DPU handled the utilities to the building. 

Police are not releasing information as to the cause of the explosion until their investigation is complete. They’ve arrested one man and anticipate more arrests. An update on the condition of the man injured in the explosion has not been released at this time.

Red Cross volunteers prepare to dismantle the temporary shelter set up Monday at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church. During the day they gave displaced residents water and helped disseminate information. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

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