Police: Hash Oil Chemicals Likely Cause of Explosion in Homeless Encampment

Three people were taken to a local hospital for treatment of their burns.

SAN LEANDRO, Ca: Hesperian Boulevard and Springlake Drive. Map Courtesy: Google Maps
SAN LEANDRO, Ca: Hesperian Boulevard and Springlake Drive. Map Courtesy: Google Maps
Two people suffered critical burns in a hash oil explosion at a homeless encampment in San Leandro Tuesday night and a third person was burned when one of the other two victims tracked chemicals into their apartment, authorities said today.
[Related article: 3 Injured in Explosion at Homeless Encampent Near Railroad…]

Reports came in at 9:27 p.m. about the explosion close to Union Pacific railroad tracks by Hesperian Boulevard and Springlake Drive, Alameda County fire spokeswoman Aisha Knowles said.
Firefighters arrived and found two people critically burned and realized that the burns might be chemical burns, prompting a response by the department's hazardous materials team.
Investigators learned that two people living at the encampment had been burning flammable gas or liquid inside a tent that had created a flash fire, burning a tarp over them, Knowles said.
Alameda County sheriff's Sgt. J.D. Nelson said the pair was using butane to make hash oil when the explosion occurred. The burning tarp fell on the two victims, burning them both.

They then ran to a nearby apartment for help. One of the burned victims went inside the apartment and tried to use the bathtub but was turned away by the resident, who did not know the two victims. That resident was barefoot in the apartment and was burned by chemicals tracked into the apartment, Knowles said.

All three were taken to a hospital for treatment. The hazmat team investigated the encampment area and the apartment and found that there were no further hazards.

The residents were allowed to return to their apartment, Knowles said. No firefighters or first responders were injured. Nelson said San Leandro police have taken over the investigation into the explosion.

—By Bay City News
Tyler May 01, 2014 at 11:52 AM
So you hear a big boom, and two homeless guys on fire crash through the door of your apartment. That's a story nobody would believe if it weren't in the news.


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