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Propane Tank Explodes, Injures Driver and Damages a McDonald's

George Severson

Propane Tank Explodes, Injures Driver and Damages a McDonald's

CREATED Apr. 21, 2012

 COACHELLA - Emergency crews responded quickly to a propane tank explosion just outside a busy McDonald's Restaurant Saturday afternoon in Coachella. A representative from Riverside County Fire says one man was injured in the explosion.

The explosion happened about 3:30 at the McDonald's Restaurant located at the corner of Avenue 48 and Jackson Street in Coachella.

Fire officials say a propane tank in the back of a pick-up truck exploded, injuring the driver of the truck, damaging another nearby vehicle and burning part of the restaurant. A Riverside County Fire battalion chief says the heat played a role in the explosion. The propane tank had expanded due to exposure to high temperatures, causing it to BLEVE (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion).

The explosion was sparked by static electricity, when the driver of the pick-up truck touched the valve of the propane tank after reports of it leaking.

Bystanders assisted the injured truck driver by taking him to a nearby medical center for treatment.