Hash Oil Explosion in Walnut Creek, California

By Tom Vacar- KTVU.com

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. —

Officials say an explosion that rocked a Walnut Creek neighborhood Friday morning was caused by a hash-oil drug lab.

The explosion destroyed one apartment unit and sent two people to the hospital with serious burns.

Police say compressed butane gas, used to cook the marijuana-based compound, leaked out causing the explosion.

The intense blow blew out windows across the street from the unit destroyed, including Sam Pura’s.

“I felt what I thought initially was an earthquake but it was a single impact greater than any earthquake or car impact that I’ve ever felt,” says Pura.

Two roommates who live across the driveway were also startled by the boom.

“I thought a plane hit my building or something I didn’t hurtle out. I did think it was an earthquake But, I knew there was some serious damage.” says Vanessa Golovich.

“There was fire and there’s like still little explosions going on and we just kind of ran out and across the street, try to get as far away as possible,” says Niki Harrington.

They ran from their place into a burning, smoking debris field and a horrific scene. ”

I saw my neighbor really badly burned all over and then I just ran out,” says Golovich.

“So severe that their clothes were no longer on them. They were burned off and they looked charred and wandering around,” Pura said.

“Basically almost naked; his whole face was bleeding, his whole face was bleeding,” says Saline Hall.

The two injured were rushed to nearby hospitals.

“One was airlifted to a burn hospital, I’m not sure which one, the other one was ground transported to John Muir Hospital,” says Contra Cost Fire spokesman Captain Kent Kirby.

The damage was so great, neither rescuers nor arson investigators could get in.

Full story here

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