Bayfield, CO - 6415 County Road 243
February 21st, 2012 at 2018 hours
On February 21st, 2012 at 20:18 hours, the Upper Pine Fire District received a report of an explosion in a residence at 6415 County Road 243. Initial reports were a propane tank exploded resulting in injuries to a child and two adults missing. UPFD responded with 21 firefighters, 6 engines, a heavy rescue, two ambulances, a rescue squad and three chief officers. A mutual aid request was placed at 20:58 hours to neighboring fire districts to support an ongoing technical rescue for the collapsed structure. Assisting in the Rescue Operations was an engine crew from the Durango Fire Rescue Authority, and an engine crew from the Los Pinos Fire District. Two regional helicopter services Flight for Life and Tristate Care Flight, assisted in the treatment and transport of the two adult patients.
UPFD Medic 61 arrived at 20:38 hours and found a local propane employee caring for an injured child on the road leading to the residence with moderate to severe injuries. The child was immediately transported to Mercy Regional Medical Center. Firefighters arriving at the home site found two neighbors on the debris pile indicating that survivors had been located under approximately 4-6 feet of debris in the crawl space of the structure. The rescue operation lasted over an hour as crews used saws and hydraulic tools to free the survivors. The first survivor was extricated from the debris at 21:56 hours and was driven to a rendezvous with Flight for Life at the north end of Lemon Lake. The second patient was extricated from the debris at 22:11 hours and shuttled to the awaiting second helicopter, Tri-State Care Flight, for transport. Temperatures at the site were in the low teens throughout the rescue operations.