Man burned in garage explosion

Okotoks: Police continue to investigate cause

By: Darlene Casten

  |  Posted: Wednesday, Jun 06, 2012 12:53 pm

The wall of this garage behind a home on Bannister Driver was dislodged by an explosion on Thursday, May 31.
The wall of this garage behind a home on Bannister Driver was dislodged by an explosion on Thursday, May 31.
Darlene Casten/OWW

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A 30-year-old man was severely burned following an explosion in a detached garage behind an Okotoks home.

Police and fire were called to the home on Bannister Drive on May 31 just after 11 p.m.

A neighbour, who didn’t want to be named, said she heard a loud bang and went outside to see what happened.

“It was a very loud explosion,” she said. “It shook the house.”

She didn’t talk to the neighbour since the explosion happened, and said she is still in the dark as to what caused the blast.

She said the activity at the house was not unusual and she didn’t know the occupants well.

Another neighbour who lives next door to the home said he believes a mother and her two adult sons live there. He didn’t hear the blast, but said he was told it was caused by a leaking propane tank that exploded when someone lit a cigarette.

“I heard it was an accident,” he said.

Both neighbours said the activity at the house was normal and the boys living there did have people over regularly.

“He had lots of friends,” the neighbour said.

Sgt. Donna Rorison of the Okotoks RCMP said police are continuing to investigate the cause of the explosion.

Rorison said there was no fire when emergency responders arrived, but one man was severely burned and witnesses said they saw a huge fireball.

“A 30-year-old man was burned and as of June 1 he was still in the hospital,” Rorison said. “He required surgery – skin grafts to his hands and face and leg I believe.”

No one was at the home where the explosion occurred on June 5 afternoon to comment.

The garage has police tape across the door, which was partially blown off. A tarp partially covered the opening and one wall was dislodged from the building and a large crack separates the wall from the roof. The garage is shared with the neighbouring duplex.

Rorison said anyone with any information about the explosion is asked to call Okotoks RCMP at 403-938-7046 or Crimestoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).


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