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Butane Explosion Injures Three, One Critical

Butane Explosion Injures Three, One Critical
July 13
12:52 2018
Marion Ali: Assistant Editor

An otherwise quiet Monday afternoon on Mopan Street turned almost deadly in an instant when a butane gas leak inside an apartment complex  triggered an explosion which demolished portions of the concrete wall, violently tore doors loose and shattered windows, hurling them some 30 feet into the street, and leaving three persons injured, one critically. A fire then engulfed the lower flat of the house and its contents.

Grayson Cadle, 21, was reportedly about to start cooking inside his apartment room on the lower flat of a house at the corner Mahogany and Mopan Streets shortly after 4:00 p.m., when a butane leak, thought to have built up in another apartment on the same flat, triggered the explosion, either when Cadle attempted to light his stove or at the flick of a refrigerator motor. Cadle, who also got butane residue on the lower part of his body, suffered severe burns to his groin area and legs and one eyewitness said that his hair was on fire moments after the blast.

The force of the explosion sent shards of shattered glass windows and debris sailing through a chain-link fence, and into the neighbouring yard at #14 Mopan Street, injuring Lisa Santos, 35, a nurse’s aide and June Tench, 56, who were relaxing in the yard. Both women also had to receive medical treatment for minor cuts they suffered, but they have been released.
A neighbour who was cleaning his house on Mopan Street told us that he actually saw the door and Cadle being hurled through the air before landing on the street. Just after the sound of the explosion.

The following day, Station Officer with the National Fire Service, Oren Smith, told reporters that the blast was so powerful because a butane leak in an enclosure that is not ventilated does not dissipate but just accumulates until it gets an ignition source.

He added that fire fighters were able to prevent the ensuing blaze from spreading to neighboring houses because, contrary to what other media houses reported Monday evening, no gas tank exploded to worsen the situation.

Upon close inspection of the butane tanks that were at the house, however, a couple of the connection hoses were ruptured and the lever on one of them was blown completely off.

 

Grayson Cadle had to be placed in an induced coma to allow doctors to remove burnt skin on almost 70 percent of his body. He has since been taken out of the coma, but remains in a critical condition.

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