Explosion Causes Injuries At Eufaula Sandblasting Company - NewsOn6.com - Tulsa, OK - News, Weather, Video and Sports - KOTV.com |

News

Explosion Causes Injuries At Eufaula Sandblasting Company

Posted: Updated:
Explosion at Ford Sandblasting in Eufaula. Explosion at Ford Sandblasting in Eufaula.
Firefighters respond to the Eufaula explosion. Firefighters respond to the Eufaula explosion.
Stephanie Layman photo. Stephanie Layman photo.
Larrissa Lapach said they've filed complaints about the company with the city and say they're not surprise by the explosions. Larrissa Lapach said they've filed complaints about the company with the city and say they're not surprise by the explosions.
EUFAULA, Oklahoma -

Two workers critically injured Tuesday after explosions rocked a Eufaula business have been identified as Michael Cox and Don Hamilton.

Emergency responders spent most of Tuesday working the fire.

Neighbors say they warned the city that someone was going to get hurt.

"I just heard a loud explosion and a rumble and I ran outside and it was everything on fire over there," said Kyle Lapach.

A buckled roof and burned metal is what's left of Ford Sandblasting. Fire officials say a propane gas leak prompted back-to-back explosions.

"I could have figured the house was gonna fall over with the size of that explosion, it was really scary," Kyle said.

The business sandblasts and paints propane tanks, among other things. Fire officials say workers were moving a 250-gallon tank when it slipped off a forklift, breaking a valve. But that didn't cause an immediate explosion.

"The tank itself it, from what I'm understanding didn't blow, it was just leaking and then, whenever it got to an ignition source, that's what caused the explosion. You know, it had to get to some kind of ignition source," said Eufaula Fire Chief Clifford Shatswell.

Firefighters haven't determined what that ignition source was, but say the explosions happened when two of the workers went back inside, possibly to turn on an exhaust fan. Both were flown to Tulsa hospitals.

The elementary and middle schools, about a quarter-mile up the road, were evacuated.

"It could have been a lot worse if the tanks would have continued to start exploding. Could have a major situation had they'd continued to blow," Shatswell said.

No more than 300 yards away sits the Lapach family home. They say they've filed complaints about the company with the city and say they're not surprise by the explosions.

"They've been doing industrial work in a commercial building and they paint and the fumes are so bad we cant keep our windows open at night," said Larrissa Lapach.

Larrissa and her family have lived in the same house for about a decade, but she said she hasn't felt safe living there since the sandblasting business moved in next-door earlier this year. She said they asked the city to look into the company's procedures.

"We were trying to prevent that by the complaints," she said. "Someone was gonna get hurt and we knew that, and I'm sorry that they did and it makes us feel awful that they did get hurt."

The propane administration was there investigating Tuesday and OSHA is expected to be there Wednesday.

And ironically enough, those school children up the road had a drill just last week to be ready for situations like this, so they were well-prepared.

Special Features

Community Calendar

Find out what's going on around town and submit events!

Share

See it! Shoot it! Send it! Share your weather pics and videos with NewsOn6.com!

iPhone App

Get breaking news, weather, sports & video directly on your iPhone.

Mobile Alerts

Get breaking news, headlines, weather alerts & more on your cell phone.

TV Schedule

Need to know what's on TV? Check out our television schedule.

Live Radar

WARN Interactive

Special Coverage

  • Bridge Tracker

    How safe are Oklahoma's bridges? Use Bridge Tracker to find out now.

  • Cold Case

    Join Lori and local homicide detectives as they search for Cold Case clues.

  • Fallen Heroes

    News On 6 honors our fallen Oklahoma heroes. View our interactive timeline.

  • Murrah Bombing Timeline

    Learn more about the events leading up to and following the bombing.

  • Storm Zone

    Watch tornadoes tear across Oklahoma and learn how to stay safe!

  • Turnpike Timelines

    View a historical road map of Oklahoma's turnpike system.

Powered by WorldNow
News On 6
303 N. Boston Ave.
Tulsa, OK 74103
TULSA'S OWN TM
GREEN COUNTRY'S OWN TM
Oklahoma's Own Newson6.com is proud to provide Oklahomans with timely and relevant news and information, sharing the stories, pictures and loves of Oklahomans across our great state including Tulsa's Own and Green Country's Own.
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014, WorldNow and KOTV. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.