Boat explosion severely burns man in St. Charles County - KMOV.com

Boat explosion severely burns man in St. Charles County

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By KMOV Web Producer By KMOV Web Producer

ST. CHARLES, Mo. (KMOV.com) -- A man had just filled up his boat with more than 100 gallons of gas Friday night when something sparked an explosion.

Paul Kribs had just pulled his boat into his slip at North Shore Marina on the Mississippi River in St. Charles County.

Orchard Farm Fire Chief Jeremy Hollrah says they aren't sure what sparked the initial fire. But that caused the Kribs' gas tank to explode. Then a boat one slip over caught fire, causing its gas tank to explode as well. A third boat had minor damage. No one else was in the boats.

A paramedic was able to pull  Kribs out but not before he suffered serious burns. Firefighters were hosing down the boats when one started floating across the way toward the gas station while still on fire.

"We thought it was going to blow up the gas pumps," said Kelly Gamblin who was in another boat in the marina. 

She says the marina owner jumped in his boat and was pushing the flaming boat away from the gas pumps while firefighters hosed it down. Fire crews eventually extinguished the fires with no further damage.

Kribs was airlifted to Mercy Hospital in critical condition.

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