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Hundreds help clean up site of fatal Baltimore explosion

BALTIMORE (AP) — Hundreds of community members in Baltimore helped clean up debris from the site of a gas explosion that killed two people and sent seven more to the hospital.

More than 400 people showed up to the northwest Baltimore neighborhood on Sunday to help clear away debris from the scene where three row homes were leveled, news outlets reported.

The blast on Aug. 10 trapped people in the debris and scattered shards of glass and other rubble through the neighborhood. More than 200 people were affected, and about 30 have had to utilize temporary shelter following the explosion, Baltimore Fire Department spokeswoman Blair Adams has said.

Councilman Isaac Schleifer organized the clean-up, where volunteers in green vests shoveled away dirt, swept debris into dumpsters and cleared yards and alleyways, news outlets said.

“This is Baltimore for you, you know we always turn out for each other, we’re always there for one another,” WJZ-TV quoted Schleifer as saying.

Down the road, a nonprofit held a sidewalk sale with some of the proceeds going toward survivors of the explosion, organizers said.

The efforts followed a Saturday night candlelight vigil honoring Morgan State University student Joseph Graham, 20, one of the victims of the explosion. Lonnie Herriott, 61, also died in the blast.

Cleanup was expected to continue Monday.

The explosion’s exact cause is still being investigated.