Friday, October 30, 2009

Motor home catches fire, explodes in Arizona

A 25-foot motor home caught fire and exploded Wednesday afternoon, sending a fireball into the sky that could be seen for miles.

According to Department of Public Safety Sgt. Dan Long, the driver of the motor home, Larry Jensen, 55, of Safford was headed to Willcox shortly after 2 p.m. when he thought one of his gasoline tanks emptied.

Jensen allegedly told DPS officers he pulled his 1985 Freeport motor home over to the side of the road near milepost 107 (about 13 miles south of Safford) to switch tanks and noticed a fuel line was leaking gas. At about the same time, he noticed a problem with one of his battery cables. Soon after, a spark from the cable ignited a pool of gas that had collected underneath the vehicle.

He attempted to drive away from the gas pool, but the fire followed the fuel and ignited the motor home. As Jensen attempted to drive away, he ended up spreading fire along the shoulder of the highway. Motorists traveling behind Jensen were able to smother the fires by scooping up sand with their hands and throwing it on the blazes. The quick-acting motorists likely prevented an even more serious situation as the wind was blowing and could easily have spread the fires, according to witnesses.
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