Truck Explodes Feet Away From Gas Station, Officials Investigating
Lynchburg, VA - One man caught fire on Wednesday; another, suffered severe burns on parts of his body, after the truck they were traveling in caught fire in Lynchburg. The blaze led to two explosions.
The explosions occurred just feet away from gas tanks.
At the Marathon gas station off of Lakeside Drive in Lynchburg, the store's surveillance video captured the first explosion that rocketed the truck's driver and passenger from the cab; after they had crawled inside to see what had happened with their cargo.
"He was hollering, he was burnt real bad" said Linwood Irving, who witnessed the explosions.
Irving says witnesses watched as one man, consumed by fire, rolled around in the parking lot trying to extinguish himself. The other man headed inside for help.
"I don't think he was burnt that bad, but when he put some cold water on it, it just rolled all the skin off, and then he started hollering" said Irving of one of the men.
A second explosion would later fan the flames and burn up the entire truck.
"It was very scary because the flames kept getting bigger and bigger" said Tabitha Banks, the Marathon employee who called 911.
Gas station employees shut off the valves to the gas and kerosene tanks sitting nearby.
"My fear was they would catch on fire with the pumps, because underneath the ground, we have big gas tanks that hold our gasoline, so that was my fear" said Banks.
Fire officials still are searching for exactly what caused that first explosion. As of early Wednesday evening, the men were still in the hospital.