Small propane tank explodes in Hayden

No injuries, little damage reported in morning blast

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— A small propane tank explosion shook Hayden this morning, but little damage and no injuries were reported.

West Routt Fire Protection Chief Bryan Rickman said the explosion occurred at about 10:15 a.m. at Hayes Trucking on Routt County Road 80 in north Hayden.

"The explosion was pretty impressive," Rickman said. "I heard it blow up about a half-mile away."

Donnie Hayes said he was using a weed burner attached to a propane tank to heat a radiator in his shop. At one point he noticed the area around the valve of the tank was glowing.

Hayes said he took the tank outside and called the fire department.

"They got a hold of that thing and got it out of the building - probably saving the place," Rickman said.

The tank exploded before firefighters arrived.

"She went bang," Hayes said.

A piece of shrapnel from the tank punctured an Airstream motorhome being stored on the property.

Hayes said he thinks the explosion was caused by a leak in the tank.

Hayden resident Jim Buford said the explosion, which happened 300 yards from his home on U.S. Highway 40 and Third Street, violently shook his residence.

"If it shakes your home it must be a pretty big explosion," he said.

-- Matt Stensland contributed to this report.

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