Multiple El Dorado County agencies investigating explosion caused by illegal butane extraction lab
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CAMINO // The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office is investigating an illegal butane extraction lab after an explosion caught the attention of El Dorado County Fire on January 1st.
Just before 3:30 PM, the Fire Department responded to the 5100 block of Pony Express Trail after the explosion was reported, only to call in the assistance of the Sheriff’s Office after suspecting that the explosion had been caused by the operation of an extraction lab.
Medical personnel also responded to the scene, treating 39-year-old Joshua Jamison for burns to his face (he was later treated at a local hospital and released) and an unidentified juvenile for possible smoke inhalation. Two other juveniles were reportedly at the home when the explosion occurred, but were not injured.
The County Sheriff’s Office and an El Dorado County arson investigator have begun a formal investigation into the explosion, quickly determining that it was indeed the result of an illegal butane extraction laboratory that had been set up in the bathroom. Officials also noted extensive structural damage to the home, with many interior walls cracked or moved, and multiple exterior walls pushed off the foundation.
The damage is reportedly so extensive that El Dorado County Code Enforcement has deemed the home unsafe for occupancy.
The Sheriff’s Office has since conducted interviews with residents of the home, and a search warrant was served in order to collect evidence.
The investigation is ongoing, with the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office, El Dorado County Fire, CPS, and Code Enforcement all as active participants. While no arrests have been made, the case also has been forwarded to the County District Attorney for review.