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Gear Saved Firefighter's Life In Explosion

Gear Saved Firefighter's Life In Explosion

Video Capture

Indianapolis Star via YellowBrix

October 30, 2010

VIGO COUNTY, IN – Brandon Hoopingarner said he was fighting a barn fire when a 55 gallon drum of paint thinner near him exploded.

“Got up and I thought I was OK and I looked down and I was just on fire,” Hoopingarner said.

He told us the gear he was using saved his life, and minimized his injuries.

Doctors treated him for second and third degree burns, mainly on his hands.

He said he’s recovering well physically, but mentally, it’s a scar that he’ll have to deal with on the next run.

However, for now, he’s living life with gratitude.

“I don’t consider myself a hero. My buddies are the heroes, they’re the ones who saved me,” Hoopingarner said.

The cause of that barn fire is still undetermined.

During the fire, Nevins Township Fire Department did not have access to one of their emergency vehicles.

Hoopingarner said he doesn’t believe that it played a role in his injuries.