State Attorney won't file charges in Blue Rhino explosion

TAVARES, Fla. — The State Attorney's Office announced on Wednesday it will not file charges related to the Blue Rhino propane plant explosion in Tavares in July.

Thousands of 20-pound propane tanks exploded into the air on July 29, injuring eight people, and causing a large fire at the plant on County Road 448.

About two dozen employees were working on the assembly line when the explosion happened.

Assistant State Attorney Richard Ridgway said in a letter to State Fire Marshal Neil Zierden, "It is clear the explosion, and subsequent fire, was not caused on purpose, but was the result of an accidental ignition, apparently caused by a fork lift."

Ridgway said he considered charges of culpable negligence, but "Under the circumstances of this case, I do not think the evidence would prove this level of negligence."

Last month, the fire marshal said the case was closed.

No further action will be taken.


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