Lehigh Valley

Family intends to file civil suit following fatal explosion ruled accidental

Explosion ruled accidental

MOORE TWP., Pa. - Officials in Northampton County now say a propane leak caused a deadly mobile home explosion.

Authorities have ruled the explosion at 118 Hickory Hills Dr. in Moore Township accidental.

William Neith Sr., 65, died in the explosion on Feb. 14.

Criminal charges won't be filed, but Neith's family plans on filing a civil suit.

Neith's son hired attorney Benjamin Lichtman to investigate.

"In this day and age, we should not have homes exploding…. Someone dropped the ball," Lichtman said.

Much of the Hickory Hills community is heated through an underground propane line, supplied by a central tank.

Neighbors said they complained of a propane odor just days before the home blew up.

And now, Neith's family wants answers.

"Where this leak was, who was responsible for fixing it, who didn't fix it, and how long did they have notice of it?" Lichtman said.

Lichtman said wrongful death and negligence claims are likely.

A victory in court may entitle the family to compensation.

But Lichtman said their primary concern is change.

"My client, Mr. Neith's son, one of his major concerns, is making sure nothing like this ever happens again," Lichtman said.

Hickory Hills is owned by Continental Communities. Calls to both offices were not immediately returned.

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