Propane tanks explode at southwest Michigan homeless camp, injuring 1 person

More than a dozen small propane tanks exploded at a homeless camp in southwestern Michigan when they were near an open fire, authorities said.

The fire was brought under control in 10 minutes Sunday by Kalamazoo firefighters. One person had minor injuries. The camp has many tents.

"The fire was caused because occupants of the homeless encampment were actively filling 1-pound propane tanks from a larger 20-pound tank near an open flame," said Scott Brooks, Kalamazoo fire marshal.

((Photo by Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images))

"There was a failure with the improvised adaptor on one of the propane tanks causing an explosion. Due to the intense heat from the fire, 15 other 1-pound propane tanks exploded," Brooks said.

More than a dozen small propane tanks exploded at a homeless camp in southwestern Michigan when they were near an open fire, authorities said.

The fire was brought under control in 10 minutes Sunday by Kalamazoo firefighters. One person had minor injuries. The camp has many tents.

"The fire was caused because occupants of the homeless encampment were actively filling 1-pound propane tanks from a larger 20-pound tank near an open flame," said Scott Brooks, Kalamazoo fire marshal.

"There was a failure with the improvised adaptor on one of the propane tanks causing an explosion. Due to the intense heat from the fire, 15 other 1-pound propane tanks exploded," Brooks said.