'A real tragedy again in Christchurch' - Neighbours pull injured to safety after house explodes

A Christchurch couple recounted the moments they pulled five injured people from a Christchurch house after it exploded this morning.

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Brad and Megan Culver, who live directly behind the home, helped others despite extensive damage to their own home. Source: 1 NEWS

Brad and Megan Culver, who live directly behind the house that exploded, were at home when it happened.

Their own home, which they rent, has significant damage.

Read more: Witness says doors of home 'blew open' after massive explosion heard in Christchurch, police report multiple injuries

Fire and Emergency New Zealand says one house is destroyed, five are "severely affected" and 17 others impacted by debris. The blaze is now contained.

"Everything in our house just sort of exploded, glass, everything," Megan said. "Very devastating. I've never really experienced anything like this."

Fire and smoke can be seen billowing following a house explosion in Christchurch. Source: Supplied / Gail Hallams

Brad added that the lights came down and the roof lifted up.

"I thought that a plane had crashed and exploded behind our house," he said. "All the surrounding houses around it are all just completely destroyed.

"Once I knew Megan was okay I ran out to assess what was going on and saw the smoke coming up behind us.

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Witness Ann Gray spoke to 1 NEWS about the Marble Court incident. Source: 1 NEWS

"The house [which exploded] was in a complete pile of timber, and rubbish. You couldn't even conceive that it was a house, there was nothing left standing."

Brad said they started pulling people out of the ruins - five people, he'd been told. "We got all five of them out before the emergency services came."

He said they were in shock.

"A real tragedy, again in Christchurch," Brad said.

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Police say five people are injured after the incident in Northwood.