A North Branford man is in the hospital with first and second degree burns after a propane explosion ripped through his home.
"It was a huge explosion," said neighbor Jim Marshall. "It even shook our house, all the glass was flying out that way. The whole front of the house went out."
The man, 70, went to light the stove and started a small fire and explosion. Neighbors rushed over to put out the flames before fire crews arrived. The victim was taken to Yale-New Haven Hospital, with burns to his upped body, singed eyebrows and hair.
Firefighters say it's a cautionary tale for many of us who are using propane grills cooking outside this summer.
"We see this with gas grills all the time," said Deputy Fire Chief John O'Brien.
Propane explosions are more common than many people think, according to firefighters. But there are steps you can take to keep yourself as safe as possible.
You may remember that last year, ESPN anchor Hannah Storm was burned by a propane grill. If you plan on cooking outside, here are some expert safety tips to use this summer:
-Store propane properly, outside not inside.
-Close the tank valve when you are done using your grill.
-Try to use up all of the propane in the tank by the end of the season.
-When in doubt, call a professional.
"Anybody that has any propane or even natural gas appliances, they should always check it every once in a while and if they smell anything out of the ordinary, they think they've got a leak, call the fire department or the gas company and have them come out and check it," O'Brien said.
"Just like anything else, if you take care of them, you'll be fine," said Marshall. "Fortunately he is alright. It was scary."
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