Just before noon yesterday a huge explosion sent fireballs up an historic landmark building in the Flatiron District, on 6th Avenue and 20th Street. WCBS reports that the explosion could have been caused by Wednesday's storm, with melting snow and salt working its way into an electrical vault on the building's exterior. FDNY Deputy Chief James Daly told them, "We've been running on manholes all night since the storm started. So it's a likely culprit."

Firefighters were on the scene prior to the explosion after someone reported a smoking manhole cover and a "burning plastic" smell, so the surrounding streets were shut down, and some of the building's tenants evacuated prior to the explosion. They expect more of these scenarios as the snow continues to melt; Daly says, "We know the potential of a transformer vault. We know a smoking vault can be an explosive vault any minute." So if you see smoke coming out of a manhole, they suggest calling 911 immediately.

Luckily no one was injured yesterday, and the NY Times reports that the building—which houses a Radio Shack, a tv studio, and the studio that used to house Air America—was mostly just charred. The Department of Buildings inspected it and "determined that the building did not have any structural stability issues.” Department of Environmental Protection and Con Ed are also testing for signs of the hazardous chemical PCB and confirming the cause, respectively.