Combustion stove goes bang

A BENALLA family is lucky to be alive after their wood-fire combustion stove exploded last night.

Benalla police Sgt Brad McMennemin said it was “like a small bomb exploded in the kitchen”, littering the room with debris.

“How someone wasn’t injured or killed beggars belief,” he said.

“Most of it would have been hot ash as well, because of the wood fire.”

Police, CFA and ambulance crews attended the Amos Avenue home about 6.15pm, where the couple, aged 90 and 87, and their 54-year-old son had been cooking on the stove.

The house had been converted to gas hot water, disengaging the stove’s water system.

However, Sgt McMennemin said some water must have been left over.

“That’s heated up and turned into steam, and the pressure’s built up, and the whole thing’s exploded,” he said.

“The lucky thing is the steam exploding put out the fire, otherwise the house could have quite easily burnt down.”

Sgt McMennemin said the couple was treated for shock, while their son had some soreness to his leg where he was hit by a hot plate.