Cache County Sheriff’s deputies and FBI agents are investigating an explosion that occurred at a Providence home Tuesday night. The blast sent one man in his mid-20’s to the hospital with shrapnel wounds.
Sheriff’s Lt. Doyle Peck said the man was transported by a friend to the ER, alerting medical staff. After they learned about the incident, investigators rushed to the home near 125 North 450 East.
“When our deputies went out there to find out had happened, they found that the man had been mixing some explosive compounds,” explained Peck. “Those detonated unexpectedly, which caused the shrapnel to his stomach, hands and face.”
The Cache County Bomb Squad and other agencies were dispatched to the home. They were able to locate more explosives that had not detonated.
Peck said deputies cordoned off the home. They also evacuated several neighbors out of an abundance of caution.
“They didn’t know exactly what they were dealing with until they could investigate it. They just wanted to make sure that nobody else got hurt.”
The bomb squad was able to detonate some of the explosives Wednesday morning and neighbors were cleared to re-enter their homes. The rest of the compounds were taken into evidence.
Peck explained that the man who was injured had an explosive license from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The compounds are described as more than just common black powder.
“These are volatile compounds that if mixed improperly, handled improperly can detonate with static and shock. They were definitely not your typical compounds that anybody in Cache Valley can buy for re-loading.”
The victim underwent surgery Wednesday to repair his hand and face. He is in stable condition. The friend who transported the man has been cooperating with the investigation.
Peck said they do not believe this was a criminal threat but are still unsure what happened. Since the man had an ATF license, the investigation is being turned over to FBI agents.
“That is part of why this investigation was turned over. We need to find out what this was about. Was this a simple accident or was there something more to it.”
Deputies do not believe the public is in any threat.