Lubben, 49, who has resided at the so-called "Lubben Ranch" since 2015, was home at the time, but escaped without serious injury.
The blast came from the house with blacked-out windows connected to Lubben's. Two residents, a man and infant son, were airlifted from 45117 Balch Park Road near Highway 190 to a local hospital for treatment of severe burn injuries. The man's pregnant wife was listed as in "fair condition".
The Tulare County Sheriff's Office states that due to "the suspicious nature of the fire", detectives from the Marijuana Investigation Team were dispatched to the scene. Two butane canisters were discovered, and the suspected cause of the fire, still officially under investigation by the Tulare Area Gang and Narcotics Enforcement Team (TAGNET), is a drug lab explosion.
|This detached garage is the only structure left standing|
The property was also placed back on the market recently.
Here are the incredible BEFORE and AFTER PHOTOS of Lubben's home
|Only smoldering rubble remains of Shelley Lubben's home and belongings|
Lubben's residence was fully engulfed when firefighters arrived, and they had to take a defensive position to keep the flames from spreading into the heavily wooded area.
Shelley Lubben has reportedly lost everything but her jeep, iPhone, and the pajamas she was wearing at the time of the blaze.
In the aftermath of the fire, multiple sources report, Shelley Lubben has confirmed that a drug lab was the cause of the disastrous blaze.
However she also claimed that despite the owner's history of running an illegal grow operation, and the building's blacked-out windows, she had no idea whatsoever that a dangerous drug lab was operating yards from her bedroom until it exploded early Friday morning.
It remains to be seen whether the injured honey oil lab operators will implicate Lubben.
Video by Cristina Davies, ABC30
The Fresno Bee reports that Joe Rosa, a spokesman for the Tulare County Fire Department, said both fire and Tulare County Sheriff's investigators are on scene.
According to sheriff's spokeswoman Ashley Ritchie, butane canisters were found in the home, so authorities were investigating it as a place where a honey-oil lab might have been set up. Ritchie said detectives were working to get a search warrant so they could go inside the residence.
Honey oil is manufactured with the used of butane, and powerful explosions can result when fumes from the gas come in contact with a flame source, such as a hot water heater.Authorities describe the injured persons at the home when the fire broke out as a 36-year-old male, listed in critical condition; his pregnant 25-year-old wife, in fair condition; and their 15-month-old baby boy, also in critical condition.
The three were airlifted to Community Regional Medical Center (CRMC) in Fresno for treatment. The parents may face child endangerment charges, reports CBS47 News/YouCentralValley.com:
"The butane containers definitely indicate a honey oil lab," said Tulare Sheriff's Ashley Ritchie.
Anyone with more information regarding this investigation or a possible location of the suspect is urged to contact the Tulare County Sheriff’s Office at 1-800-808-0488 or anonymously at firstname.lastname@example.org or by text or voicemail at 559-725-4194.
|A butane hash "chef" packs a pipe with marijuana trimmings that will be used to make butane hash. (Genaro Molina / L.A. Times)|