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UPDATE: One person dead, another injured after truck explosion in Howard


HOWARD, WI (WTAQ) - Officials say one person is dead and another is hurt after a semi truck carrying carrying heavy equipment exploded Thursday.

The Brown County Sheriff's Department say it happened on Pamperin Road, near Grubber Road around 1:25 p.m.

Authorities say the truck was carrying a compressed natural gas fuel system. Howard Public Safety Director Ed Janke says something shifted in the truck causing the system to detonate.

The truck belongs to Ace Manufacturing Industries, which has two facilities near each other on Pamperin Road. It was driving from one of the facilities to the other at the time.

The male driver was pronounced dead at the scene. A male passenger was thrown from the vehicle and taken to an area hospital with critical injuries.

In a statement late Thursday from Ace Manufacturing Industries co-owners Kelley Krouth and Brian Lakari, " First and foremost, our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the truck driver who lost his life in this accident, as well as another worker who was injured. For privacy reasons, we are not releasing the names of those involved. We are a small and close-knit company and this has shaken and saddened all of us.  We are fully cooperating with local authorities. Our second shift has been cancelled, but we will resume third shift operations.”

A number of businesses were either evacuated or asked to take cover in a save area of their business while rescue crews addressed leaking fuels and removed the injured passenger.

Howard Fire and Brown County Hazmat Teams secured the area so a Reconstruction Team could start to document the scene.

Pamperin Rd. between Velp Ave. and Cornell Road will remain closed for several hours while the investigation continues.