Man in critical condition after empty barrel explodes

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BOUNTIFUL, Utah — A man is in critical condition after an empty barrel he was cutting exploded.

Deputy Chief Jeff Bassett, South Davis Metro Fire District, said the 66-year-old male was using a welding torch to cut holes in an empty 55-gallon drum near 500 North and 660 West.

Shortly after 2 p.m. an unknown fume ignited and the drum blew up. Pieces of the drum struck the man in the head.

Bassett said they do not know why the drum exploded. He said the drum was empty, but they will investigate to see if it once contained flammable materials.

The man was flown to a trauma center in Salt Lake City.