Tuesday, June 19, 2018
Public safety

Blast at Lake County propane plant critically wounds three

Three people were critically injured in a massive explosion at a propane plant in Tavares last night, according to media reports.

The blast and subsequent fire rocked the Blue Rhino Plant on County Road 448 in Tavares about 10:30 p.m., according to reports from Bay News 9 and a sister station, Central Florida News 13.

Between 24 and 26 employees were inside at the time, the reports said, in addition to 53,000 20-pound cylinders for gas. At one time, 15 people were missing, but all had been accounted for by about 6 a.m. Tuesday, Lake County officials told reporters.

Homes around the plant reportedly shook when the explosion began, and a fireball allegedly could be seen from miles away.

Authorities had evacuated the area within a half-mile radius of the plant for part of the night, but that order had been lifted as of Tuesday morning, according to Bay News 9.

Officials told reporters that they are hopeful no one died, but they plan to search inside the plant during the day.

 
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