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Man hospitalized with severe injuries after explosion west of Henryetta

Man hospitalized with severe injuries after explosion west of Henryetta

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Downtown Henryetta

Authorites found a cache of explosives in a house not far from downtown Henryetta, seen here in 2017, on Monday.

A Henryetta man was hospitalized with life-threatening injuries after an explosive device detonated early Monday, and people in a several-square-block area were evacuated as authorities rendered a cache of explosives safe in the man’s house, a federal agent said.

The device exploded west of the Henryetta city limits in Okfuskee County around 3 a.m. Monday, leaving the man with “very severe” injuries, said Ashley Stephens, a senior special agent for the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

He said the man was flown by helicopter from Okfuskee County to a Tulsa hospital.

“Family members went up there (to Tulsa) to meet with him, and we obtained information there were potentially homemade explosives in the vehicle in which they were driving,” Stephens said Monday evening.

He said the Tulsa Police Department’s Bomb Squad helped ATF and FBI agents safely recover those items. Authorities then got a search warrant Monday afternoon for the man’s residence near downtown Henryetta.

The search of the home, in the 300 block of South Fourth Street, turned up what Stephens described as a “cache of explosives that were in fragile condition and needed immediate attention.”

“And also it was dangerous enough that we had to evacuate (homes) a few blocks around us while we worked in case there was a detonation,” he said.

An investigation remains ongoing, though Stephens said the area no longer presents any imminent danger to passersby. He did not say what types of explosives were discovered on the man’s property.

“Today was one of those days where everybody worked really well together,” he said, adding that at least nine different public safety agencies, from local police to federal agencies, responded.


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