Explosion in Farmington claims the life of firefighter, leaves others seriously injured

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FARMINGTON, Maine (WABI) - Monday marked a devastating day for the town of Farmington.

A non-profit agency's building was destroyed in an explosion.

A firefighter was killed.

Six other people were injured, including five firefighters.

"This morning we had an unfortunate tragic accident occur here. Where one of our own, a Farmington fireman lost his life."

Shortly after 8 a.m. Monday morning, an explosion left one firefighter dead, five firefighters and one other person injured.

Farmington Fire Chief Terry Bell is among the injured. He was flown to a hospital in critical condition.

The building that exploded was the newly-renovated LEAP Incorporated.

That non-profit provides support for people with intellectual disabilities.

"We want to protect all other communities from this kind of thing happening. And make sure we get to the cause and origin and exactly what happened and why and make sure it doesn't happen to anybody again."

"The preliminary investigation looks like it may have been a propane or a natural gas leak. That's in the very early stages in the investigation."

LEAP Incorporated has released a statement on Monday's explosion:
"There was an explosion at LEAPs Central office this morning. Staff were evacuated and to the best of our knowledge no LEAP staff were in the building at the time of the explosion. First responders and a LEAP maintenance person were injured in the blast. Our hearts go out to anyone injured or impacted today. There were many heroes whose actions today saved additional lives. Those heroes included first responders, LEAP staff and neighbors."