Propane gas leak caused home explosion in Belmond

KIMT NEWS 3-  A local man was severely injured after an home explosion and fire Monday in Belmond. The Belmond Fire Department was called to 1288 Taylor Avenue at around 4:50 pm.

Belmond fire chief Dean Adcock said a propane leak in the line that goes to the gas heating unit on the basement wall caused the explosion. Adcock said Bob Vierkant was transported to University Hospitals in Iowa City for treatment, who suffered burns to 60% of his body.

“One of the walls were blown out on the south end and some cement blocks were blown out of the foundation on the north end,” said Adcock.

Adcock said the cause of the gas leak and the ignition is undetermined.

It’s common in rural areas for people to have propane tanks to supply fuel to the house for heat. K&H Cooperative Oil operations manager Eldon Meyers said if you smell an odd odor, people should evacuate.

“If the leak is in the home, you exit the home without turning on any light switches or causing any type of ignition source,” Meyers said. “Exit the home and close the tank valve and go to your neighbors and call your supplier so they can come safely check it out.”

Meyers said most people can smell the strong odor from a propane leak, but people should still consider purchasing a propane gas detector that can be installed.


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