Little Rock Apartment Building Explodes, Residents Evacuated

LITTLE ROCK, AR - The Little Rock Fire Dept. is investigating the explosion of a southwest Little Rock apartment building that sent five people to the hospital.

Residents of Auxora Arms Apartments reported an explosion last night in one building of the complex.  Authorities did not immediately know the cause of the blast, which reduced the building to rubble.

The LRFD says the building had eight units, three of which were vacant.  Capt. Randy Hickman says five people were taken to hospitals, and one of those was in critical condition.

Resident Anya Johnson told Little Rock television station KLRT that she at first thought she heard a thunderstorm, but it was much louder than thunder.  Johnson says residents were asked to evacuate if they had a place to go.

The American Red Cross of Greater Arkansas says it's responding to the blast and fire.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)