St. Augustine explosion victims in fair condition

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. -- Two people were injured in an early morning industrial accident explosion.

St. John's County Fire Rescue responded to Indianhead Biomass in the 1700 block of Adams Acres Road around 7:45 a.m. following reports of an industrial accident, according to SJCFR.

SJCFR contained the scene and treated two victims who were identified by the St. John's County Sheriff's Office as Charles (Chuck) Victor Smith, Jr. and Brad Hartley for injuries. Both Smith and Hartley were transported to UF Health Jacksonville in serious condition. As of 4 p.m. Tuesday, both Smith and Hartley were listed in fair condition.

A preliminary investigation suggested Smith and Hartley were welding a large tank when residual combustible gas within the tank ignited causing an explosion. The incident is currently under investigation by the State Fire Marshal, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, according to Lt. Jeremy Robshaw with SJCFR.

Indianhead Biomass Services is a solid waste disposal facility and processing plant that accepts yard and land clearing debris, but does not accept household trash.


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