Fire broke out at a home in the 600 block of East Broad Street in Tamaqua just before 7 a.m. on Tuesday.
Jennifer Wissian and her husband were sitting on the back porch of their home across the street.
"We heard a big boom, and then we heard sirens go off," she said. "I told him to go look, and we seen a bunch of the fire company coming right up the street."
Wissian said she saw smoke rising from the rear of the home. Tamaqua Fire Chief James Connely said he believes the "big boom" came from propane tanks sitting on the back deck.
"They were 20-pound tanks. He had two of them on his back porch for a grill. When the propane released, with the fire already there," Connely said. "That got the propane on right away. You can see how it wrapped around on the side. That's what a lot of people heard. I think that pop was probably the relief valves releasing on the propane tanks."