A firefighter is helped out of the rubble of a home in Codorus Township. MORE PHOTOS
A firefighter is helped out of the rubble of a home in Codorus Township.
MORE PHOTOS (JOHN PAVONCELLO - jpavoncello@yorkdispatch.com)


An autopsy Tuesday morning determined the woman found dead in the rubble of a home destroyed by an explosion and fire died of smoke inhalation and thermal injuries, according to the York County Coroner's Office.

The manner of death was ruled accidental, the coroner's office said.

A positive identification on the body has not yet been made. That is expected to be done with dental records, according to the coroner's office.

Check back later for more details.


A body was found in the rubble of an explosion and two-alarm fire at a home in Codorus Township early Tuesday morning after firefighters spent hours battling the blaze and trying to find a woman who was feared dead.

The blast and fire in the 3000 block of Sticks Road near Glen Rock were reported at 8:50 p.m. Monday.

About 4:30 a.m., York County Deputy Coroner Steve Cosey reported a body had been found in the rubble.

Cosey had been called to the scene because a person was determined to be missing shortly after fire crews from southern York County and Maryland arrived.

He said an autopsy Tuesday would determine both the identity and a cause of death. A name will be released after notification of next of kin, he said.

The rural ranch-style home was reduced to a pile a smoldering rubble, with insulation and other bits of house scattered across the yard. Some of the foundation's walls were all that withstood the blast and flames.

Two of three cars in the driveway behind the house were burned beyond recognition.

A neighbor nearby said he heard and felt the blast.

Investigation: State police and members of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were on the scene investigating.

State police Cpl. Steven Wise confirmed there had been an explosion of some sort.

"According to witnesses in the area, they felt it, the ground shake," he said.

At the scene, troopers and firefighters scanned a wooded area behind the house with flashlights and fire marshals and other firefighters sifted through the remains of the house.

Wise said an excavator had been called to aid in their efforts.

Trooper Robert Hicks, a state police spokesman, said investigators were on the scene until after 5 a.m. Tuesday. He said they were still investigating the cause as of 9 a.m. Tuesday.

Found: A woman who identified herself as a family friend and a neighbor said the woman believed to have died in the fire arrived at the home about 10 minutes before the explosion.

The woman is in her 40s, according to the neighbor.

As firefighters doused hotspots, a firefighter walked over to the family friend and handed her a framed picture that was blackened and charred by the blaze.

After cleaning off the still intact glass of the frame, a group of neighbors and friends said one of the people in the photograph was the woman feared dead.

-- Reach Greg Gross at ggross@yorkdispatch.com.