VERMILION, Ohio — A house explosion in Vermilion is being blamed on a hit-and-run crash in which authorities say a driver went off the road and struck a gas meter.

It happened early Thursday morning in the 15300 block of Darrow Road. A deputy responding to the crash was there when the explosion took place.

Vermilion Darrow Road house explosion
Shane Snider, WKYC

Erie County Sheriff Paul Sigsworth tells WKYC the explosion was so fierce that it knocked the deputy off his feet and blew out his car windows. He was treated and released at a nearby hospital.

The occupants of the house were able to get out unharmed, as were their two Mastiff dogs, who they believe ran off but were both later found alive.

Vermilion dog reunion
Chris Tye, WKYC

A suspect, 56-year-old Kenneth E. Karnow, has since been arrested in connection with the incident.

Kenneth Karnow
Erie Co. Sheriff

We will update this story with more information as soon as it becomes available.

Vermilion Darrow Road house explosion 4
Shane Snider, WKYC