Former ABC11 photographer hurt in explosion

Rick Allen and his wife Cindy
January 4, 2011 9:00:00 PM PST
A former ABC11 news photographer is recovering at UNC Hospitals after an explosion at his home Monday.

Rick Allen, who is an avid scuba diver, was hurt after he knocked over a fiberglass oxygen tank in his garage and it apparently exploded causing a flash fire.

The explosion caused extensive damage to the couple's Fayetteville home and sent parts of the garage door and a car bumper 25 to 30 feet into the yard.

Allen's wife Cindy, who is a photographer for the Fayetteville Observer, was inside the home when the explosion happened and was cut by flying debris.

Allen's neighbors say Allen has burns on 20 percent of his body and doctors had to amputate part of his left arm. He is currently in stable condition.

Neighbors searched the debris in his garage Tuesday and say they are amazed the 47-year-old survived the explosion.

"He had just come home from a Carolina Hurricanes game the jersey was all but gone and he had a lot of blood on his chest, and I could see his legs arms looked like they were sandblasted," neighbor Matt Blashfield said.

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