Hand-held propane tank explodes at Fillmore barbecue; woman killed


Fillmore fire officials say Astrid Marmont, 41, was killed and her husband was seriously injured after a hand-held propane tank exploded.

Investigators say the family used the tank to light coals on their barbecue and then sat it down nearby.

"It's a hand-held propane lighter. It appears...that they sat the propane bottle next to the barbecue and the radiant heat from the barbecue heated up the gases in this hand-held propane bottle. The gasses in this propane bottle expanded to the point it had nowhere to expand and actually...exploded," said Fillmore Fire Chief Rigo Landeros.

Neighbors said they heard the explosion followed by screams.

"I heard screaming and yelling. I looked over my fence and I knew it was serious," said Paul Tholl of Fillmore. "They were applying pressure to her neck. From what I could see, it didn't look good. It's a tragedy."

Fire officials say safety is very important when doing anything that involves fire and propane or any other kind of flammable igniting fluid.

"Always use these types of tools in an open area. Make sure that you keep it away from any radiant heat. Also wear the proper equipment -- gloves, some goggles, anything of that sort -- to help prevent any accidents from happening," said Landeros.

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