CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - A Charlottesville family will not be able to return home after a fire left their Anderson Street home destroyed and a neighboring house damaged on Saturday.

Charlottesville fire and rescue responded to multiple 911 calls for an explosion around 4:00 p.m. on Saturday.
The blaze took crews more than an hour control, and while the home is a total loss, neighbors and firefighters say tonight, they're thankful everyone is okay.

"We saw the spout of water going every which way,” said Anderson Street neighbor Carol Mayer. “We saw the smoke billowing, we saw the big crane with a hose, big spray of water, huge and still the smoke just billowing out, [it seemed] just really hard to put this fire out."

Crews were able to protect the homes next door, but were unable to fight the flames from inside.
Firefighters say that the home was vacant when they arrived. According to neighbors, one homeowner and a relative were able to escape just in time.
This home was the oldest in the neighborhood and according to Charlottesville Fire Chief Andrew Baxter, its age contributed to how quickly the home went up in flames.

“It’s what we call balloon frame construction, so the vertical studs in the house go all the way from the basement through to the attic without fire stops,” said Baxter. “It’s a type of construction you don’t see any more [because] it’s not up to code anymore.”
Neighbors say that their thoughts and prayers go out to the family.
The homeowner was transported to UVA Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries. Fire crews say neighbors brought them water and cold towels for the entire time they were on the scene.