A man suffered second-degree burns Saturday after a propane tank in the back of his pickup truck exploded in the southern California heat.
It happened around 1:45 p.m. in Coachella, Calif. after the 100-degree temperatures apparently caused pressure to build up inside the tank — prompting the tank to start releasing gas as part of a fail-safe mechanism, KESQ-TV reported.
“When the driver of the vehicle exited to try to secure the leak by turning the valve, static electricity completed and the ignition of the fire and explosion was caused by that,” firefighter Justin McGough told the station.
The man was taken to the hospital; his two children in the truck were rescued and escaped unharmed.
According to the Desert Sun, the force of the blast was enough to launch the truck’s tailgate into another vehicle and to engulf the rest of the vehicle in flames. The McDonalds building had minor damage as well. None of the patrons inside were hurt.