Man jailed for Manchester gas blast suicide bid

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Media captionDrone footage showed the damage after the house explosion in Manchester

A man who triggered a gas blast that partly destroyed a house in a suicide bid has been jailed.

Kevin Carroll was "very disorientated" after splitting up from his partner, Manchester Crown Court heard.

The 33-year-old suffered burns following the blast at a property in Cecil Road, Blackley on 16 January, which led to a school being evacuated.

He was jailed for two years and eight months after admitting criminal damage with intent to endanger life.

Image copyright GMFRS
Image caption The explosion caused damage to neighbouring houses

His 29-year-old housemate, who was waiting outside after returning home, was injured when the door was blown off the hinges and landed on top of him.

He has made a "good recovery" after suffering significant burns that caused "unbearable" pain, the court heard.

Their 75-year-old neighbour was upstairs when his ceiling collapsed on him, while another neighbour living opposite was thrown from his chair and suffered bruises to his knee and hips.

A couple living two doors down were thrown off their bed as the room filled with dust and smoke.

Image copyright GMP
Image caption Kevin Carroll was said to feel "enormous guilt" after the blast

The nearby Blackley Academy, for pupils aged three to 11, was closed after the explosion caused the building to shake.

Alaric Bassano, prosecuting, said: "Some of the children were crying and the headmistress noticed that two Syrian pupils were quiet, withdrawn and frightened."

Carroll's landlady had suffered "ruinous financial loss" because her insurance company was refusing to pay for the £135,000 cost of rebuilding the property, which remains a pile of rubble, the court heard.

Nicola Gatto, defending, said: "[Carroll] was at an extremely low ebb in his life. This was a relationship that was not only coming to an end but in an extremely toxic fashion."

She said her client had never intended to cause an explosion, adding: "He feels enormous guilt and very genuine remorse to anybody who has been affected by his actions."

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