Warren County flash fire/explosion under investigation by OSHA, State Fire Marshal

Firefighters responded to a flash fire/explosion inside a home in Washington Twp., Warren County on Tuesday. The State Fire Marshal and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the incident that injured two geothermal heating installers and damaged the house in the 10000 block of Wilmington Road. Photo courtesy of WCPO.

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Firefighters responded to a flash fire/explosion inside a home in Washington Twp., Warren County on Tuesday. The State Fire Marshal and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration is investigating the incident that injured two geothermal heating installers and damaged the house in the 10000 block of Wilmington Road. Photo courtesy of WCPO.

Two geothermal heating installers remain in two area hospitals recovering from serious burns and injuries after a flash fire/explosion early Tuesday afternoon at a rural home in Washington Twp., Warren County.

Fire Chief Bob Wysong of the Clinton-Warren Joint Fire District said investigators from the State Fire Marshal’s Office and the area office of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration were on site Wednesday at the house in the 10000 block of Wilmington Road, just east of the Warren/Clinton County line.

“They are looking at how the vapors ignited,” Wysong said. “It could have been worse, people could have been killed.”

Explore2 workers injured in Warren County flash fire, explosion at home

Three workers were in the basement at the moment of ignition, which started a fire that spread to the kitchen on the first floor of the Wilmington Road home, according to WCPO. Wysong said the men were using denatured alcohol for the geothermal heating system being installed by Jackson Geothermal of Mansfield. He said the company was on the scene Wednesday to remove three 55-gallon drums of the denatured alcohol which is used to clean geothermal heating systems and also keeps the water from the ground from freezing.

Wysong said the two men who were hospitalized are doing better but was unaware of their prognosis. He said no first responders were injured in fighting the blaze.

He said the family of Adam and Sarah Baker were home at the time of the fire, but everyone was able to get out of the house at the time of the flash explosion. Wysong said the family is staying with friends.

Wysong said damage to the home was estimated at $30,000 to $35,000. He said a structural engineer will need to evaluate the house before it can be re-occupied.

In addition to the firefighters from Clinton-Warren Fire District, mutual aid was provided by fire and EMS units from Wilmington, Salem-Morrow, Harlan Twp., Blanchard Twp., Goshen Twp., Chester Twp., Hamilton County HazMat, and the Warren County Sheriff’s Office.

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