Barnesville, MN – Two people suffered from minor burns in a gas explosion at a western Minnesota home early Tuesday, June 18.
The Clay County Sheriff’s Office said an explosion at a farm house a few miles south of Barnesville was reported at 5:30 a.m.
Homeowner Brad Cook said he started to smell something strange as early as Monday, but didn’t think it was a propane leak.
“I emptied the garbage, (and thought) it might’ve been a banana peeling in there that was giving off some odor or whatever,” Cook said. “I did not smell gas, propane or sewer gas.”
The sheriff’s office said a resident lit a candle, igniting the gas that had been leaking inside.
Witnesses of the explosion, which damaged the house’s roof and siding, said the roof was lifted about 4 inches off the house before falling back down.
Cook escaped with first-degree burns to his right hand and right foot. He and another resident of the home were taken to the hospital to be treated, according to police.
“I was really lucky. I just didn’t expect what happened, but if somebody else can learn from this, that’s a good thing,” Cook said.
After seeing the damage to the inside and outside of the house, Cook says he’s unsure if the house is worth saving.
“If I did try to put it back together, it would always be ‘the house that blew up,’ and it really wouldn’t have any value to anyone,” Cook said.
Tuesday afternoon, the Cook family waited for their insurance company to tell them if the house can be saved.
Barnesville is about 25 miles southeast of Moorhead.