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N.Y. couple injured in camper explosion

One patient in the Spafford explosion was trapped inside by the debris of the explosion


Photos/New York State Police

By Darian Stevenson

SPAFFORD, N.Y. — A couple living in Spafford was injured Monday when their camper exploded, trapping a woman inside, troopers said.

Around 10:54 a.m., a 911 caller reported a camper exploded at 1335 W. Valley Rd., State Police spokesperson Trooper Jack Keller said in a news release Monday.

When officers arrived, they found a Northern Lite camper — attached to Chevy Silverado 2500 — had been blown apart, he said.

The woman — Barbara J. Hamlin, 74, of Spafford — was trapped in the debris in the camper, Keller said.

Keller said she was conscious, but had a fracture to her left ankle. Officers helped firefighters remove debris and clear out the back of the camper to get her out, he said.

Her husband — Robert M. Hamlin Jr., 75 — had facial burns. He was standing outside the camper when it exploded and was knocked to the ground, Keller said.

Robert Hamlin told officers he and his wife accidentally left the propane tanks attached to their camper open. He said he could smell propane that morning, Keller said.

Robert Hamlin said his wife went inside the camper and turned on the stove, possibly causing the explosion, Keller said.

The camper and the exterior of their home sustained significant damage, Keller said.

Robert and Barbara Hamlin were taken to Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse with non-life-threatening injuries, Keller said.

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