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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Crime/Public Safety

Man injured in propane explosion at homeless camp near Spokane River remains hospitalized

UPDATED: Fri., Jan. 21, 2022

An explosion in a tent at a camp near the Spokane River sent two people to the hospital.   (Courtesy of the Spokane Fire Department)
An explosion in a tent at a camp near the Spokane River sent two people to the hospital.  (Courtesy of the Spokane Fire Department)

The man injured in an explosion at an encampment near the Spokane River this week remains hospitalized, while the woman injured has been treated and released.

The Spokane Fire Department responded to reports of a fire near North Waterworks Street and East Surro Avenue just after 3 p.m. Monday, Fire Chief Brian Schaeffer said.

When firefighters arrived, they found a man with critical burns and a woman with serious burns.

“They were able to communicate and told us they were in their tent and there was an explosion,” Schaeffer said Monday.

They were quickly transported to a nearby hospital for treatment. The man was moved to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where he spent a few days in the intensive care unit.

The two were using a propane tank for heat, and the explosion happened when one of them lit a cigarette, Schaeffer said.

As of Friday, he had been moved out of the ICU but remained hospitalized for burn care, Schaeffer said.

The woman was treated and released from Sacred Heart Medical Center.

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