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Berkeley Springs men burned when propane tank leak ignites

October 06, 2007|By ERIN JULIUS

HANCOCK - Two Berkeley Springs, W.Va., men were burned in an accident Thursday night at Rayloc Corp., Deputy State Fire Marshal Jason M. Mowbray said in a press release

Harry Didawick and Donald R. Stotler were working around a propane filling station when a propane leak was ignited by a fork truck, Mowbray said. A subsequent flash fire burned both men, Mowbray said.

Didawick, 63, sustained second- and third-degree burns to his head, neck, chest and arms, Mowbray said Friday morning.

Didawick was listed in good condition Friday night at Johns Hopkins Bayview Burn Center in Baltimore, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Stotler, 53, sustained first-degree burns on his arms, Mowbray said. A hospital spokeswoman who was asked to provide Stotler's condition Friday afternoon did not return a phone call.

Stotler's injuries were "rather minor," Mowbray said Friday night.

Both men refused treatment at the scene, but later sought treatment at Morgan County War Memorial Hospital in Berkeley Springs.


Didawick was taken from there to Bayview, Mowbray said Friday morning.

Rayloc was conducting an internal investigation Friday morning, general manager Jay Kirkland said.

"It was indeed an accident, a failure of a piece of equipment that couldn't be predicted," he said.

Rayloc has contacted the appropriate authorities, Kirkland said. He would not specify what agencies were contacted.

His understanding was that the victims' injuries were "relatively minor," Kirkland said.

Rayloc was not under any obligation to report the incident to Maryland Occupational Safety and Health, Roger Campbell, assistant commissioner of MOSH, said Friday afternoon.

Campbell was not informed of the incident, he said.

Companies must report to MOSH when an incident results in a death or when three or more people are hospitalized, Campbell said.

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