Police did not identify the cause of the incident. Authorities are still investigating the cause.
"Often with these types of things it's the blast wave that can actually kill people further away from the actual radius of the initial explosion", he said.
He was comfortable the scene was secure and fire teams had "the safety of everyone well in hand".
Those injured have all been rushed to hospital, with their injuries ranging from serious to critical, and six homes in total have been significantly damaged. One has been flown to Middlemore Hospital in Auckland where there is a serious burns unit.
Fifty residents have been evacuated from the suburb of Northwood and emergency crews have cordoned off the scene.
He added: "The house is matchsticks". Some, who live on the south side of Millstream Drive, are now being allowed to return home.
Witness Tom White told local media that concrete tiles from the roof of the house had been blown 100m in every direction.
The house where the explosion happened is totally destroyed, he said. 'It's blown the garage door right of the next-door neighbour's house'.
The modern brick house where the explosion happened - and was felt across the city - has been totally destroyed.
"I think there are definitely some injuries".
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"We started pulling people out of the rubble and asked how many people were [left] in the house and they said five and we were able to get all five of them out before the emergency services arrived".
Maria Lee heard the boom in Burwood, about 15 minutes away from Northwood.
"Suddenly there was a very big, loud noise and the clock came crashing down", said their mum as she recovered from the traumatic event at a friend's place.
"Our dog just about crapped himself".
"Fire and Emergency New Zealand was called to a house on fire.at about 10.15am after reports of a large gas explosion", a spokeswoman for New Zealand's fire service said.
Video footage posted to Facebook by James Looyer shows a suburban house lying in ruins after a gas explosion in the New Zealand city of Christchurch on Friday.
He said he went inside the still-burning house to help evacuate people.
According to the New Zealand Herald newspaper, an unnamed Christchurch hotel worker said a sound like an explosion was heard and nearby buildings were left shaking.
"It was more than an quake, you'd think a bomb had gone off", the worker said.
"For the staff and everyone, it was certainly scary".