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tv   Caught on Camera  MSNBC  December 25, 2013 4:00am-5:01am PST

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. >> it was like a rocket, you know, coming down. >> massive flames. >> it was hairy. >> it was hairy. >> enormous fireballs. >> stand back. stand back. we just had a huge explosion.
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>> i thought this is it, i better at least catch it on pape paper. >> "caught on camera" boom. welcome to "caught on camera" i'm contessa brewer him going through our daily routines we can be surrounded by dangerous materials and equipment and not by a ware of it. usually we don't have nothing to worry about, compressed gases, blasting materials are safe when used and stored properly. if one little thing goes wrong the consequences can be disastrous. a fire breaks out at southwest industrial gases in dallas, texas, on july 25th, 2007. this is no ordinary fire.
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on the lotter, 700 tanks filled with compressed gas, including oxygen, helium and the hottest burning gases of all acetylene. >> acetylene burns at about 3,400 degrees. it's used as far as what the common person knows mostly in welding and cutting. >> local tv news cameras record the blaze as it burns out of control. >> we didn't, of course, realize the scope of what the fire was going to be. >> the fire begins during the delivery of tanks to the refilling station. >> the delivery driver comes running in, he says, man, i got a leak. i think i broke a valve. i can't shut it off. what do you want me to do? >> the employer grabs a fire extinguisher in case the gas
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ignites. >> kind of floating there, kind of greenish. i grabbed the fire hose, i started foging it. who knows what can happen? >> sure enough in just a few seconds, it does. >> it goes woosh. and the first fireball hit me, knocked me hard. i reached in. i noticed the skin was coming off my hands like fast. >> randy and others try to extinguish the flames, but it's no use. >> i got scared. i didn't foe what was going to happen. >> in less than a minute, another tank unleashes a fireball. randy's clothes ignite. >> the second fireball hit me. it moved me back six, eight feet. the flag is going to flicker out of my shorts. >> one tank of compressed gas after another begins to explode. >> the flames were going over the top of the building. every time one of those would explode, way up high, the meet
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heat made it up there. >> incredibly, randy and the people at the facility are able to get out before the entire place erupts into an inferno. minutes later, dallas fire rescue arrives is there once we got there, we weren't sure exactly what was going on or why it was happening. but we knew we had a big problem with a lot of air cylinders. >> randy and a colleague are rushed to the hospital with multiple third degree burns. >> i saw big bubbles everywhere. it was crazy, from there the pain starts. with adrenaline. >> even with everyone out of the facility, fire officials are up against a formidable beast. >> initially, i had never seen anything like it. i just wanted to, you know, what the heck is going on. >> the tanks are designed to release gas as they heat up to relieve pressure. but under these extreme conditions, with so many tanks
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and so much fire the released gas ignites and causes a chain reaction that cooks the tanks beyond their limit, resulting in massive explosions. >> each time one of the acetylene cylinders reach approximately a thousand pounds per square inch, that cylinder ruptures and it either ruptured in place or it ruptured launching that cylinder into the a air. >> we basically have projectiles that can kill a person and when didn't foe when they were going to explode, how they were going to explode. what direction they may take off. >> the fire is too dangerous to try to put out. >> we are in a divisive mode. we have the facility surrounded and we are basically why you in a defensive mode, we are actually containing the fire.
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>> you don't want to extinguish the fire. you want to contain it. and just let it burn itself out so that you are not releasing the free gas into the atmosphere to start another fire somewhere else. >> officials shut down a half mile wide area around the fire as the cylinders launch off to the nearby highway. >> we're so used to going in, handling the situation, putting the fire out that this fire was leaving the situation. it was jumping on top of bridges away and that was just something that we hadn't seen in it before. >> nearby businesses get shoved. >> it was like a war zone, we don't tow where the next slender was going to come down, where the next missile may land and that caused a lot of concern. >> people on the street are moving targets. >> i heard their tanks that are exploding. when you hear those go off, it sounds like mortar rounds everybody waits for it to fall. >> it was like a rocket you know
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coming down, some white was firing. >> even fire officials come under attack. >> all of a sudden we hear this sound and hear this crashing and 150 feet off to our side, one of the cylinders had come and landed in a parking lot over there. >> traffic is backed up for miles as huge explosions filled the sky all day long. >> we had fireball after fireball after fireball that was being created simultaneously. >> several agencies monitor the air quality for contaminants. >> the gases look leak they're dissipating. it doesn't look like there is a risk to the public. >> it takes nine hours for the fire to burn out. nearby cars and buildings are incinerated.
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>> i think we had some projectiles go from that area. that's scary. >> luckily, no one was killed. >> it was an act of fate, an act of god, those projectiles were hitting things like empty freeways. >> andy spends more than a month in the hospital. the fire changes his life forever. >> i couldn't stop work, i couldn't know the next day if i'd be able to go ten minutes without having to lay back down. so i haven't worked since then. it's been tough. >> an investigation concludes the fire was the result of operator error during delivery. >> it seems as if there was a cap placed on one of the cylinders and somehow that cap was misaligned. >> that caught fire and then the fire grew exponentially. >> the war-like blaze leaves its mark on those who battled it up close. >> i have never seen anything like this before i couldn't even imagine something like this
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occurring and it really, it really changed the way i look at fire fires. >> coming up, a high speed case ends in a fireball. a suicide bomber pulls the trigger. >> i thought i saw three people die. >> a propane factory unleashes a shock wave is. >> holy -- it looked like those videos you use in movies like a nuclear explosion. >> and a train blows sky high. >> it just blew up. my god. my god! >> when "caught on camera -- boom!" continues.
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a frantic car case comes to a fiery end in detroit, michigan. >> there was a terrible crash
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just now on michigan avenue. >> the crash is caught by joel alexander, bill chemanski and they pick up the chase on the morning of august 13th, 2009. >> this guy was out to get away. he was going to do anything he could to go at an speed, to go anywhere he had to go in order to escape being caught. >> the eyes in the sky are in the middle of their morning job, calling traffic for the local radio and tv stations within they notice a place car with its sirens on following a pick-up truck. they soon learn it's stolen. >> he's weaving in and out. people are slamming on their brakes doing everything they can to avoid the vision. >> the driver crosses over into the oncoming lane and runs red lights. >> every single time that we continue at a high rate of speed. what's he doing?
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>> those in the chopper are filled with dread. >> we start thinking of the mom in the caravan, the innocent bystander, a head-on collision. >> smoke starts billowing, it was an indication that something happened. as it turned out, it did. >> the chase is not over yet the pickup races down the wrong way on a 3-lane road. >> i closed my eyes and clenched and go, i don't want to see it. i have been doing this over 18 years. that's something i don't want to see. >> the driver swerved back and forth and narrowly misses a pedestrian. >> it was high speeds. >> the pickup approaches a red line and brushes up against a
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car? >> he's racing towards he's not stopping for everything. >> before racing onto the freeway. you keep your fingers crossed nobody is driving along and all of a sudden gets broadsided by a maniac. >> the truck criss-crosses through traffic and gets off the freeway and runs several more red lights, narrowly missing another car. >> there was at least a half dozen instants somebody slams on the brakes. he didn't. he would go through the light. >> police stay in pursuit as the driver shows no seen of letting up. >> this person obviously was wanted for something. we didn't know what the last thing he wanted to do was to surrender to the pickup. >> soon he was blowing more red lights. >> in times of danger leak that, they're going wrong ways, the
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police would back off and continue to pursuit within it got safer. >> at one intersection the truck goes airborne, but the driver keeps going, flying the wrong way down one-way streets and into oncoming traffic. >> this guy kept going and going and going. >> after weaving through traffic the truck approaches yet another intersection, this one has a green light but a minivan begins to turn. >> i saw the minivan getting ready to turn. the first thing that goes through my mind is don't do it. but the driver doesn't expect someone to be racing at that high speed. >> it hits a light pole and bursts into flames while joel was live on the air. >> oh. >> there was a terrible crash just now on michigan avenue. >> as i started my report, the accident occurred. >> it is amazing, the truck is totally destroyed and on fire right now. >> everyone in the chopper following the case is stunned when the car explodes.
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>> it was a shock. i remember just, oh, this audible whoa came out of me because it was so spectacular. >> at the high rate of speed he was going, at the angle he clipped that lamp post i think that ruptured the tank. >> the pickup clips another truck coming out of the parking lot then hits the light pole and explodes in front of the denier. >> a big qualifierch it was huge. we thought we were gone. >> they are working the grill. >> that was the day i thought i was going to die. >> the car explodes in front of her and her customers. >> the car and the front tire went through that building there. >> patrons check on the driver of the truck clipped before the explosion. >> i remember seeing people coming out of the restaurant. defense a flurry of activity. >> the police try to extinguish the fire but it spreads. >> too much fire.
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fire was too big we even ran in here got out of the extinguisher. it wasn't enough. >> somehow, everyone at the diner escapes injury. >> imagine at that hour, it was sickening to think of what the consequences would have been. >> the driver in the parking lot both suffer minor injuries. >> i felt so relieved. at least that no one innocent was injured severely as a result of this person's total disregard for safety for respect for other people on the roadways. >> the driver dies at the scene. he is later identified through dental records as 20-year-old daniel dool of new york. he had a record for chasing cars. >> i doubt i had -- every time we fly up michigan avenue i still know exactly where that denier is. >> coming up, a nighter jet is
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brought down by fancy flying. >> an oil tank erupts like a volcano. >> it was a pad dash for survival. a flammable gas facility. >> holy -- >> turns night to day. when "caught on camera -- boom!" continues. .
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>>. >> in butte, montana, 1989, plain clothes police officers are negotiating with a man who has raked his car with explosives. suddenly, the vehicle explodes. >> i just couldn't believe what had happened and my concern was now for, am i at a loss, i believed they were dead. >> sergeant dan hol is rushes to help one of the fallen officers when the bomber terry rossland emerges from the burning vehicle. >> i couldn't believe my eyes, terry was out of the vehicle. terry was actually on fire. >> if mayhem begins ours earlier
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after rossland robs a drug store for valium. the sheriff quickly learns of the incident. >> he showed them an attache case that he had a bomb inside of it and if he didn't get the valium, he would detonate and the pharmacist did the right thing and gave him the valium. >> minutes later, local police are on the suspect's tail. soon he is cornered. >> we tried to get him out of areas if he did detonate one of the busiest thorough fairs in butte. >> a camera man covers the standoff. >> they had the car stopped in the middle of the intersection. it was a couple fire trucks sitting kind of blocking the street police cars,ance plans sitting down the block a bit they were talking to the guy
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through the window. >> rossland tells police his car is rigged to blow sky high. they believe him. the suspect has threatened to blow himself up before. but that incident ended peacefully. >> to me, that was a call he was reaching out for help and when i first heard of this incident, i thought, well, you know, terry is reaching out again. >> this time, things will end differently. >> he said he had a device that was a pressure release device and if you tried to remove him from the vehicle, you know, it would set off the explosives. >> it turns out sergeant hol is is long time friends with the bomber. >> terry and i met about 20 years prior to the incident. he was working at a convenience store and my partner and i would always stop in and visit with him, make sure he is working the grave yard shift. >> the sergeant and leiutenant bob lee communicate through a crack in the window trying to convince him to give up peacefully. >> we tried to talk him into not
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even thinking about taking his life because he was so young and that he had a family. >> but they are alarmed by what they see inside the car. >> he had a couple gallons of what appeared to me to be gasoline in the box with pipe bombs and more gunpowder, things like this in the back seat. >> rossland sips cough syrup and asks to see his wife and son. >> he kept inquiring about bringing his family there and so now we know as far as i was concerned, we kept saying we couldn't locate them. which we couldn't. >> they were having problems, she was filing for divorce. he was taking medication for depression and other things. so this probably might have been what pushed him over. >> a crowd gathers as the standoff intensifies. >> it was back and forth. police kept coming up, talking to him. then they'd walk away, then they'd come back and walk away and he'd signal them to coming
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up. >> rossland asks for more drugs. >> he requested valium and codeine and things of that nature. he was taking those items we'll we had him stopped. we decided to go ahead and try and immobilize his vehicle even further by, you know, letting the air out of his tires. >> but as rossland becomes more disoriented, sergeant hol is becomes more concerned. >> when those drugs started to take effect, terry's personality changed, he was just really being agitated and angry. that's when i went back and told leiutenant lee and the sergeant he just might do this. >> rossland motions for the sheriff and leiutenant lee. they lean in, hoping the suspect is going to give up. >> i thought at that point he was going to disarm the explosives. >> instead, rossland detonates the bomb.
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>> all i could remember seeing is feeling a burst of power hit my chest and explosive hit my chest. a big ball of orange. a flame. >> i thought i saw three people die. i really did think i saw three people die. >> incredibly, moments later, the sheriff is back on his feet. then he sees rossland emerge from the burning vehicle. >> he was totally engulfed in flames. >> rossland falls to the ground when a second bomb in the back seat of the car explodes. rescue workers spring into action and transport the victims to the hospital. the fire department works to bring the inferno under control. >> we were getting sprayed with glass and the concussion of the
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explosion, we felt itlet. it was pretty intense. >> both the sheriff and leiutenant lee survived the explosion with only middle eastern injuries. >> i don't know how we survived. that convinced me that there was somebody up there that wanted me to stay here a little longer. >> terry rossland has burns over 70% of his wide but he too survives >> i did not have any idea he actually survived that explosion. after seeing that there was no way that anybody could live through that. but he did. >> rossland takes his own life before his trial gens. >> it was unfortunate, i wish we could have done more for him. i just don't know what it would have been. >> coming up, a tank filled with crude oil unleashes a
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texas-sized explosion. >> and it was hot. >> a shock wave causes buildings to crumble. >> it fell off my bed. >> and a fighter jet falls from the sky. when "caught on camera" boom! coontz.
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>>. >> here's what's happening, two rockets landed in the u.s. embassy of the afghan capitol kabul. thousands of holiday gifts will not arrive until after by a shipping snag because they were overwhelmed with demand. first lady michelle obama is answering questions by children tracked by norad. now back to "caught on camera." . >> welcome back to "caught on
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camera." on cantessa brewer. air shows are meant a to showcase the abilities of pilots with death defying stunts and precision maneuvers. at one show in canada, it was how the pilot exited that got the spectator's attention. a military fighter jet, the canadian air force's cf-18 hornet is practicing a low speed, low altitude maneuver called an alpha pass for the left bridge international air show in alberto. the air show doesn't officially start until the next day. but some eager aviation buffs are on hand to see the action all eyes are on the planes that swoops overhead. the spectators are about to get a show they'll never forget. two cameras are recording the well trained pilot's tricky move. one camera zooms in, the other stays wide as the plane slows
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and starts to turn. suddenly, the pilot ejects. the plane wobbles then dice. nose first into the ground. the multi-million dollar war machine explodes into a fireball. thick, black smoke billows into the air. the twisted wreckage burns out of control. onlookers are horrified as emergency crews rush to the scene. dramatic close-up photographs show the pilot ejecting from the cockpit seconds from death. he's taken to the hospital. captain brian hughes of the 425 tactical wing compresses three vertebrae in his back. incredibly, he makes a full recovery and tells his story to matt lauer on "the today" show. >> the training kicked in. it became obvious what i needed to do. i was well trained for it. it was a matter of pulling the handle going for a ride.
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>> captain hughes is 100 feet from the ground when he pulse his rocket propelled ejection seat. >> i few my only chance of survival was to 'ul the ejection handle. >> it launches him in the air more than 100 miles an hour. >> it was quite a ride. i remember the whole thing, pulling the handle. the canopy jetsons iway from you and crashing to the ground was quite surreal. >> he lands dangerously close to the fireball and is dragged along the runway before finally coming to a rest. >> i knew i was landing close to the fireball. i had so many other things going through my mind it didn't occur to me that i could get pulled into the fireball. once i was being dragged away from the fireball, then i knew that was better then i was trying to get out of my parachute. >> captain hughs is hand picked to perform at the air show because of his experience and
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expertise and says the plane malfunctioned. >> when i added the power, its started sliding through the air. then the nose dropped. so when i started feeling the jet sliding to the right, i knew there was a problem. i tried to fight it for a second or two. the jet was not responsive to whatever i was doing to it. >> an investigation shows a sticky engine piston and strong winds contribute to the crash. captain hughes spends six months recuperating before returning to the cockpit. also in canada, a fire breaks out at a propane facility in toronto, ontario, shortly before 4:00 in the morning. it quickly spreads into a seemingly bottomless pit of flames, and exploding cylinders of propane. >> when we got to the scene, we actually had small cylinders that were exploding and rocketing several hundred feet in the air. >> in the pre-dawn darkness, huge clouds of propane flare up like explosions from hell.
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dark smoke billows from the uncontrollable blaze. cannisters shoot up like rockets. >> most of them were the smaller slnders. they are commonly called a 33-pound cylinder. this site had hundreds of those on site. that's what was rocketing up in the air. my biggest concern is where was the staff? because we couldn't see them coming down. >> the fire begins during a delivery at a 24-hour propane supply business. >> there was an accident that released a large amount of propane. so that cloud found an ignition source. that was a vapor cloud explosion. there was a tremendous amount of force. >> reporter: the initial explosion severely damages several nearby houses. residents are awakened from their sleep and run for their lives. >> the house actually shook and the windows blew and the door, the glass, it i i fell off my
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bed. my sister started screaming. >> we had the entire drywall ceilings completely flattened knocked out of a ceiling on a house on the floor or over the beds in this type of thing in the adjacent area. >> an even bigger explosion is brewing. there are several huge tanker trucks at the facility. each filled with as much as 30,000 gallons of propane. soon after the fire starts, one of the tanks explodes. >> look at that, look at the fire. holy -- >> the explosion is caught on camera by andrew bishop. >> holy -- it looked like those videos that you use in movies like a nuclear explosion just like dropping an atom bomb or something, mushroom clouds, seems unreal. >> the initial blast that starts the fire wakes andrew up and he gens recording the scene from his balcony. >> it woke me up so hard core. >> i thought it could have been an earthquake, maybe something hit my building or something
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like that. and i had no clue that anything exploded. >> then the 30,000 gallon propane tank explodes. >> i was shocked more than scared. i had never seen anything leak it before. >> the shock wave hits him. >> that's a part of the reason the camera went shaky. all of a sudden we get this big push coming at us. everything is moving. it was just like surreal. that was the biggest, the loudest sound i had ever heard. >> the massive explosion flows out windows and sets off car alarms. >> every car parked out here, the alarm was going off, everybody was running outside to see what was going on. >> the fiery cloud slowly dissipates into the night sky. >> oh. >> it was bright orange and, you know, it seemed to lift like this aura from it like i don't know, craziness. >> the enormous blast is the
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result of fire melting the steel surrounding the tank, followed by the massive release of propane. the explosion is called a blevy. >> a blevy is a boiling expansion explosion. the steel will weak because of the pressure inside it ruptures. that pressurized gas is released very, very quickly. >> the fire department tries to keep the other tanks from exploding by cooling them with water. >> you put the water where the flame is inpinging on the steel to keep that steel cool so it won't fail. so you are controlling the fire. you are not really putting it out. >> authorities evacuate the neighborhood, closed highways and airspace and pump water for 15 straight hours. >> we foam down to the water pumping station, have them increase the pressure for us because we're using such large amounts of water. we were putting on 500 gallons a minute from two directions. him so it would prevent another
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blevy. >> the fire burns itself out. the disaster zone isn't safe for more than a month. >> over the next 36 days, we were still on scene because there were thousands of 100 pound cylinders that could have been damaged once you start to move them, they could explode. >> one employee is killed in the fire and a fire fighter dies of a heart attack. the enormous inferno leaves its mark on canada's largest city. >> this was a six alarm fire in toronto and we've had six alarm fires for high rise buildings, factories and other things like that. this was certainly a significant event because it wasn't just the fire. it was the exploding as well. >> coming up -- >> stand back, stand back. we just had a huge explosion. >> a mystery train in flames, unleashes a toxic cloud. >> i haven't seen flames or smoke of that kind before. >> firefighters get too close to
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now tell me, what's in your wallet? an i'll tank has been burning for hours in three rivers, texas. on august 10th, 1990. fire department personnel think they have it under control. then all of a sudden the ground begins to tremble. medic lisa stewart is at the scene. >> you can hear it just rumbling and shaking the ground and it just sounded awful. >> suddenly, the oil tank erupts like a volcano. >> and when it blew, everybody ran. it was chaos. >> people flee and a water truck
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tries to speed away. >> it was hot. people were running and scattering. >> the flames grow bigger and bigger as everyone runs for their life, including kens tv cameraman. >> dam it, i got to run. >> are you okay? >> the heat radiated very intenselych i got 2nd and 3rd degree burns on my arms. the only thing i can think of was to grab michael remarks cover my face. >> the super heated vapor cloud scorches everyone nearby. >> the fire in the cloud was like a mushroom cloud, like an atomic explosion you'd see on tv. >> lisa helps treat several badly burned firefighters.
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>> i remember we started taking off people's shirts and pouring some of the water that the drinking water on them or soaking their tee shirts in ice water, putting them back on there. >> give me that glass of water. my arm is burning. >> we had to triage and get the worst ones we to the needed to go to the hospital. okay, the ones that the skin was coming off. and couldn't walk or burned, you know, more than 25, 30% of their body. >> the oil tank catches fire hours earlier. lisa stewart is one of the first responders. >> the flames were shooting up hundreds of yards and the plaque smoke was just everywhere. >> when cameraman david villarreal gets to the scene, he moves as close as he can to the fire and resumes filming. >> i was probably two football fields away from the tank,
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itself, still smoking and occasional flames. >> trying to get enough water on there to go ahead and try and knock it out. >> the smoking cauldron ominously flares up. >> what is causing the flash we keep see something. >> right now, that could be several things. >> as i was videotapeing the tank fire there were a few flare-ups. you could see the flaem billow out. as soon as it flared up, they put water on it, go back down. >> officials believe the flooi fire is engs clo to being extis being exping i ting wi exextinguished. >> i was ready to back and leave. >> but a dangerous condition known as a boil over is brewing. >> a couple fire departments looked at the footage and you know was apparently one of the
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first times a boilover type of explosion had been caught on tape. >> a boilover can occur during air tank fires because oil is lighter than water t. water pumped onto the burning oil tank sinks to the bottom where it eventually boils into steam and explodes, propelling the flameing oil on top into the sky and the surrounding area. >> where were you at when the explosion happened? >> flipping the nozzles on the tank. it started to boil over. be i the time we noticed it was going to boil over, we backed down, it was too late. it caught us. >> it was a pad damad dash for survival. heat was so intense. we didn't know when he was going to stop. >> before the explosion the fire department was aware of the boilover danger but believes that i have it under control. >> we have to stop operations in about ten minutes.
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>> firefighters can prevent a boilover from happening by making sure the water sprayed on the tank drains out the bottom. this time, they miscalculate. >> as the water tank boiled over. >> despite the chaos, david a instincts kick in. he keeps taping as he runs away. >> i thought this is it. how i had the presence of behind to point the camera backwards and run, but i thought this is it. i better catch it on tape. >> more than 30 people are burned including david who radios for help. >> i had blisters the size of oranges on my arm. it was pretty painful. i was out of work for like three months until i recovered. >> firefighters who thought the
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fire was under control suffered the worst jurisdiction. >> it would take off the gear. they sat there and starred running and that's how they got burned? >> real bad. some people was burned worse. >> what did you think would happen? >> who ran the fast e69. >> it was the worst day of my life. >> this explosion is a lesson learned. coming up. >> it just blew up. my god! >> a frayed train filled with flammable liquids turned into a thunder bomb. >> felt like somebody opened a door. >> when caught on camera, boom, continues.
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. >> per a 110-car freight train
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derails and catches fire near luther, oklahoma in 2008. >> i was more concerned because it was burning hot and very rapidly. i knew that possibly something could happen at any moment. >> helicopter news reporter jim gardner covers the accident. >> we arrived on scene and saw name coming out of the cracks of the tank on the ground. big jets of name. >> jim stays up wind unsure what the cars were carrying. >> you want to know where the wind is. it's possible it's toxic chemicals and you don't want to get the smoke or the fumes off of it. >> on the ground, jt langston from the luther volunteer fire department is one of the first on the scene. >> it was going good.
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the fire was going pretty hot and heavy there. >> the fire department doesn't know what the cars are carrying either. >> i department know what was in them or how bad it was. we knew we needed to get on it quick or we would have trouble. >> the fire chief is faced with the most dangerous situation of his career. his small department is not trained to deal with hazardous material. >> a lot of the training is not available sometimes. my concern is keeping my guys safe. we needed to know what we would do before we would send anybody in. >> the fire department is outmatched. >> it scared us all that what are we going to do and how are we going to do it? >> they call in reinforcements as it spreads to a nearby oil pump. >> it caught an oil well on fire
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several hundred feet away. that's how intense the heat was. >> the train cars are carrying oil and ethanol. >> just to make sure everybody was out of the smoke or anything else. >> huge name spew from the super-heated inferno and thick, dark smoke fills the sky. >> pan back! we had a huge explosion. >> suddenly one of the train cars explodes in a gigantic plume of fire. >> it just blew up. my god! my god! >> it was unbelievable. i'm at 1,000 feet and i thought
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this was not stopping. i'm level with this mushroom cloud. >> the explosion was pretty amazing. i hadn't seen flame and smoke go that high before. >> it catches firefighters by surprise. >> it's like wow! we heard it. we felt it. and heat off of it was unimaginable. what are we going to do next? >> the firefighters are a safe distance away, they feel the intense heat of the explosion. >> we were a half mile away and it felt like somebody opened an oven door and you felt the heat. >> jim feels the heat from the chopper. >> you have them on the side of the doors in front. i actually had one that slid back and we feel the heat comes from the window. very hot and very intense. if they have been on the ground close to the water, they would
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have gotten burned. >> the train explodes just outside of town and no one is injured by the blast. >> it could have been a really messy deal. >> after the explosion, the fire eventually turns itself out. >> all 26 years of flying and all the news i covered, it will stick in my mind for the fact that it was such a large ball of fire and came so high. >> it just blue up. my god! my god! >> whether the cause is mechanical failure or human error, when combustible materials get out of control, you can expect big fires, big explosions, and big booms. i'm contessa brewer.
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that's all for this edition of caught on camera. . >> caught on camera, terror at sea. cruise ships run aground. >> it was a scene out of the titanic movie. >> vacationers fight for their lives. >> they are rocking the boat. please don't rock this. >> a barge mows down a boat full of sightseers. a tourist is blasted by a rogue wave. and a day-trip turns disastrous. these unsuspecting victims all struggle to keep


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