Two sent to hospital after explosion in Red Deer
Published Sunday, July 15, 2012 1:06PM MDT
Last Updated Sunday, July 15, 2012 6:30PM MDT
Two people were taken to hospital after an explosion in Red Deer Sunday morning.
Officials say emergency crews responded to an explosion at 37 Nagel Avenue just after 9 a.m.
Investigators believe a propane tank being stored in a moving truck had exploded.
A man was opening the sliding door on the truck when the explosion happened.
The man's son was in the garage at the time. Both men were taken to hospital and treated for burns, before being released.
“Two persons were injured as a result of the explosion. One person had first-degree burns on his back and the second person had first and second-degree burns on his arm and face I believe with lacerations,” said fire investigator Wes Van Bavel.
Officials say the explosion caused some damage to at least six nearby homes.
Ilse Zachmann lives in the area and said she barely escaped harms way having just walked by the truck seconds before the blast.
"(There was) a big loud bang and fire straight high in the sky and debris was flying all over the place," Zachmann told CTV News.
Derick Renaud, another neighbour, said the explosion forced him out of his bed.
"It shook my bed, it shook my light fixtures," Renaud said.
Investigators say the family was moving into the house.
The man who had originally opened the sliding door of the truck, told fire crews he never shuts his 20-pound propane tank off, so the valve would have been open when it was in the truck.
Officials say the barbeque burner inadvertently got switched on throughout the course of the move and gas filled the truck overnight, leading to the morning blast.
They believe static electricity, an appliance near the garage, or the lighting of a cigarette may have been what ignited the propane.
Investigators are reminding residents to turn off propane tanks when they are being transported. They're also reminding those who live in apartment buildings or condominiums that it is against provincial law to take a propane tank into any building, which means you can't take the tank to your suite through hallways.
With files from Laura Lowe