Explosion reveals possible meth lab in Riverview - FOX 13 News

Explosion reveals possible meth lab in Riverview

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One man is in critical condition after an explosion inside a barn. The Hillsborough Sheriff's Office believes it was a meth lab. Right now they're analyzing different paraphernalia they seized.

Most everyone we talked with said they were not surprised by any of this.

Plenty of people heard a loud boom.

"I was sitting out here in the barn, and it sounded like a transformer going off," said Jill Keys.

Another woman told us she saw a man running like a human fireball across the yard.

"The only victim we had was an adult male, who was critically burned and flown to Tampa General Hospital," said Larry McKinnon with the Hillsborough Sheriff's Office.

The explosion happened just after 4 p.m. Thursday, in a ramshackle barn, behind a mobile home on Center Ave. in Riverview.

Detectives wore gas masks and hazmat gear, looking for signs of a meth lab.

They believe the man may have been making the stuff in melted two-liter bottles they found in the barn, when the fumes must have ignited.

"Strong suspicion it's a meth lab based on the smell that we had when deputies got here, the type of explosion," said McKinnon.

It's that smell that had people worried.

It put the neighborhood in danger, and lots of kids were outside playing when the explosion happened.

"When we walked out, there was like a mist of smoke and I thought maybe it was a fire, but I didn't a meth lab or anything that blew," said Keys.

"The problem is, is that they're extremely volatile and they have a very dangerous vapor, that if you inhaled, can cause a lot of serious harm," said McKinnon.

Sheriff's Deputies were called to the same residence on Monday night, after several neighbors complained they heard a very physical fight escalating in the back yard.

"I got these two little girls right here and I was scared bullets are gonna start flying," said Billy Keys.

They're so worried they won't let their little girls play in the front yard.

"There was a guy just sitting there, bangin', bangin', bangin' on his truck, effin this, effin that," said Keys.

"I called 911 back, I'm like, you guys gotta get here! Somebody's gonna get hurt!" he said.

Charges are pending right now, because two children live there with their parents in the mobile home on the property. Child protective services talked at length with their mother.

Luckily those kids were not home when the explosion happened, but plenty of other children were and that's what disturbs neighbors the most.


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