Dan Krebel Burned In House Explosion

Dan Krebel Burned In House Explosion

A Burksville home was completely destroyed in a gas explosion just after 10:30 a.m., on Sept. 29. Ken and Katrina Kloepper lost their home, clothing and inside possessions. The residence is located along Lemen Road near the intersection of Kaskaskia Road (on the Waterloo side of Burksville). Local plumber Dan Krebel was severely burned in the explosion. He owns Krebel Plumbing of rural Red Bud.

Krebel remains hospitalized at Mercy Medical with burns to his face, arms, hands, and sides. Dan remains in good spirits, and his wife and children are keeping him company. Ken Kloepper was also in the home at the time. He received only minor wounds. The Kloeppers lost their pet cats in the fire.

The cause of the explosion has not yet been determined.

Krebel had installed a waterline the day before. He returned to the Kloepper’s that Friday, Sept. 29, because the pilot lights had went out at the home. Krebel lit the pilot light in the upstairs’ stove, and then went downstairs to do the same on the hot water heater. It would not quickly light, so Dan asked the homeowner to go upstairs to get a striker. By the time Mr. Kloepper got to the top of the stairs the explosion took place. The front and back walls of the house immediately blew out and the second floor started falling down.

Kloepper made his way through the rubble and out of the home. Although badly burned, Krebel was able to run up the stairs and head for the daylight of the front yard (there was no front door left to run out). Krebel and Kloepper were able to get to a safe location away from the burning home. Smoke and flames could be seen for many miles around.

A Monroe County ambulance and deputy officers were soon on the scene. The Waterloo, Maeystown, Red Bud and Valmeyer Fire Departments were also dispatched. Krebel was rushed by ambulance to St. Anthony’s Hospital where he was stabilized. He was then transferred to Mercy to receive specialized treatment for his burns.

Firefighters worked for just over one hour to put out the fire. The State Fire Marshal is handling the investigation to determine the cause of the explosion.

Dan Krebel

Waterloo firefighters spray water on Ken Kloepper’s burning home.   - photo by Gage Wienhoff

Waterloo firefighters spray water on Ken Kloepper’s burning home.   - photo by Gage Wienhoff