Person flown to hospital after propane tank explosion in Pulaski County

HMN-According to WDBJ 7

PULASKI CO., Va. (WDBJ7) One man was airlifted to the hospital after another explosion at Claytor Lake Monday afternoon. It happened as a man re-filled a home’s natural gas tank.

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The homeowners were put in a hotel Monday night, but thankfully no one else was hurt. The worker has burns on the upper parts of his body but based on the EMT’s initial assessment that seems to be it. It appears this was a standard fill up gone terribly wrong.

A massive hole and charred black walls are the tell-tale signs of the explosion that happened here Monday afternoon around 3:30.

The homeowner said he didn’t think anything was out of the ordinary when he saw this truck outside. But then he felt the house shake and knew something was wrong.

“It was a pretty big explosion. I saw some fire, but when I looked out I saw him rolling and him and it was the gas guy rolling trying to put out the fire and he had rolled all the way from our house to the next house,” homeowner Michael Goodrich said. “Then there was another explosion and that was the bigger explosion and that is where there was quite a bit of fire.”

The gas tank was under the deck, and based on an initial review, fire investigators believe a static electricity spark is what probably caused the explosion. 911 was called and crews from the nearby state park and from across the county responded.

“The service tech with Southwestern Virginia Gas Services, he was airlifted to Wake Forest with what is said to be about 25 percent burns to his upper body and I think second and third-degree burns from what they estimate,” Pulaski County Assistant County Administrator Anthony Akers said.

Crews hope to get a better look at what’s left when the sun comes back up. A quick response helped prevent this from being much worse.

“The fire crew they did a great job. It doesn’t look too bad on the inside, there’s a lot of smoke damage, and it took out the kitchen. But the rest of the house is pretty much OK,” Goodrich said.

It’s not clear what protocols this company has in place for discharging static electricity or if they were followed. WDBJ7 reached out to Southwestern Virginia Gas Services but did not hear back.

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ORIGINAL STORY

One person was airlifted to the hospital after a propane tank explosion in Pulaski County.

An employee of Southwestern Virginia Gas Services of Radford was filling a propane tank at a home near Claytor Lake State Park, when investigators are saying that a static electric charge sparked the propane fuel creating the explosion.

That person was taken to the hospital with 2nd and 3rd degree burns. A quarter of his body was burned.

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