HAGERSTOWN — Deputy State Fire Marshals are investigating an incident where a man was injured when a fuel tank exploded.
The 45-year-old man sustained burns and traumatic injuries after he tried to weld a 100-gallon portable fuel tank to the back of a flatbed truck.
Investigators determined vapors within the tank exploded, causing the victim to become engulfed in flames and throwing another employee, who was on the back of the truck, to the ground.
Fellow employees immediately came to the aid of both, discharging a portable fire extinguisher on the victim who was welding.
The 11:47 a.m. incident on Thursday occurred at Advantage Landscaping and Construction in Hagerstown.
Firefighters from Maugansville-Goodwill Volunteer Fire Company and paramedics from Community Rescue Squad initially treated both victims. Maryland State Police Aviation Command later flew the 45-year-old Hagerstown man to Johns Hopkins Bayview Burn Center, where he is listed in critical condition.
The 32-year-old employee who was thrown off the truck sustained non-life-threatening injuries and was transported to Meritus Medical Center.
Investigators estimated that approximately 20-gallons of off-road diesel fuel was inside the tank when it exploded.
The investigation into the accidental explosion continues as the victim's condition is monitored.