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Two dead after building explosion in Shawano County

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Posted at 1:17 PM, Dec 31, 2021

TOWN OF LESSOR (NBC 26) — Two people are reported dead after a building explosion in the area of the town of Lessor, located in Shawano County.

The explosion was reported Friday afternoon at around 12:30 p.m. According to the Shawano County Sheriff's Department, four people were in the building at the time of the explosion. Two were killed and found dead at the scene by authorities. Two were injured and flown to an Appleton Medical Center.

The sheriff's department said officers tried to perform aid on the injured.

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Explosion in Shawano County. Dec. 31, 2021

The explosion happened within a garage area of a building. The sheriff's department said their initial investigation into the explosion revealed that a pressurized container had been punctured which caused an explosion. The investigation is still ongoing.

The explosion caused damage to the building, as well as another building next to it.

Multiple fire departments responded to the scene. Fire departments came from Pulaski, Navarino, and Bonduel, among others.

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Explosion in Shawano County. Dec. 31, 2021

NBC 26 called the Town Hall in Navarino (a town near Lessor) and the Town Chairman verified that an explosion happened at an auto repair shop on HWY 156 and 47.

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Explosion in Shawano County. Dec. 31, 2021

"I came here, went into the barn," witness David Nowak said. "As soon as I got in the door, I heard a boom."

That’s when Nowak dialed 911.

"The debris [was] just flying," he said. "Not a lot of flames but a lot of snow, but they can see it blew the walls right out of the building."

Nowak was visiting his parents house right across the street when he heard the explosion.

"There was two helicopters here, two or three ambulances, probably about 8 or 9 firetrucks," he said.

Nowak says the building used to be a nightclub.

Officials are still unsure what the name of the business or building is at this time. Crews are done working at the scene and authorities say to call the Shawano County Sheriff’s Department for any updates.