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UPDATED: Fireground audio from Blue Rhino LP gas plant explosions in Tavares, FL. Fires out. Now reporting eight employees injured & no deaths.

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NOTE: Early this morning the Orlando Sentinel reported “multiple deaths and injuries” from the fire and explosions with 10 people unaccounted for. Now it is reported that all are accounted for and there are at least eight employees of the plant injured with no deaths. The fire is now out. At 2:40 this morning residents around the plant were allowed to return home.

Orlando Sentinel:

Just before 7 a.m., Tavares Fire Chief Richard Keith told reporters on the scene that, “we don’t think there was any act of sabotage or anything like that.”

Instead, “It was probably a human or equipment error,” he said.

He said the plant takes old propane cylinders, cleans them, refurbishes them, fills them and sells them. They pack them up on palettes for shipping.

Officials overnight said that as of Monday, there were about 53,000 20-gallon propane tanks on site. The fire came from those canisters, most of which ignited in the blaze. Due to the intensity of the flames, Keith said, firefighters had to let it burn itself out to some degree.

The three bulk tanks on the property — which hold 90,000 gallons of propane each — did not ignite in the fire, he said.


A massive emergency response was called to the plant, which is located at the 300 block of County Road 448, after multiple injuries were reported.

All employees on staff at the time of the explosion were accounted for by 2 a.m., Lake County spokesman John Herrell said. 

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Comments - Add Yours

  • Ex-Lt . Mark

    FD radio traffic from command post states all employees accounted for. Primary search being conducted . So it appears that unless the original injuries result in a fatality, there wouldn’t be any fatalities. News stations still reporting 15 missing, but I would believe command would be more reliable at this point. Mop up underway currently. All FD units par .

  • FMCH

    Hey Dave,

    Local news is now reporting that everyone is accounted for, and there are some in the hospital, but they’re not saying anything about deaths.

    • dave statter

      Yes. It is now updated. Thanks. Orlando Sentinel reported deaths early this morning.

  • Fire21

    In the first video there’s the scene where it shows a road and a speed limit sign. All I could think of at that point was the song, “Highway To The Danger Zone”. Glad no fatalities, hope all injured recover quickly.

  • MichiganFF

    (1st video) removed by user. :(

  • deezy

    These guys have it rough. 2 man career engines and no volunteers is the standard county-wise, except for the municipalities, who run 3-man career.

    Good on them for “doing more with less”

    -From your brother the next county over, good work Lake County guys!