Gas Grill Starts Multiple Faribault Mobile Homes on Fire
Faribault Firefighters spent a few hours on Sunday battling multiple fires following the explosion of a LP gas tank from a gas grill. The call was received 5:14 p.m. The Faribault Fire Department, Faribault Police Department and North Memorial Ambulance all responded to the report of an explosion and multiple mobile homes on fire at 415 Western Avenue.
Chief Dustin Dienst says, "Upon our arrival both mobile homes at lot 74 and 75 were heavily involved in fire. It was verified that all occupants were out of lot 74 but crews performed an initial search of lot 75 as all occupants were unaccounted for. The home was not occupied and residents were located safe and sound. One occupant of lot 74 did go to District One Hospital with burn injuries."
Chief Dienst added on the KDHL AM Minnesota program today he spoke with the injured woman last night and the injury was not indicated to be severe.
Fire crews attacked the fires in both homes simultaneously and it took some time to get the flames under control. Both structures sustained serious damage, but some personal belongings were saved in each home. Crews cleared the scene at 8:30 p.m.
The gas grill was being used at lot 74. Somehow during grilling the 20 pound liquid petroleum (LP) cylinder fell off it's holder and the hose broke. This released pressurized LP which started the fire. Chief Dienst said today, "It was basically a flame thrower."
An explosion followed shortly thereafter which was the result of the LP cylinder being super-heated by the fire. The explosion and the proximity of the mobile home at lot 75 started that structure on fire also.
The Faribault Police Department was able to provide vouchers for the residents of both homes to stay in a hotel in the short term. The Red Cross was on the scene before fire crews left and assisted residents with basic necessities because most of their belongings were lost in the fire.
Chief Dienst commented, "This is a tragic end to a beautiful Easter Sunday. We hope and pray for the occupant that went to District One Hospital and are thankful no one else sustained any injuries in this fire."
The Faribault Fire Chief did go over some gas grill safety tips on AM Minnesota. He said this grill was on a small deck on the home and recommends not having a grill on the deck. Grills are not allowed on apartment decks but are legal on home decks.
Dienst recommended keeping the grill at least 6 feet from the home and turning off the gas valve when you are finished using the grill.