Lemoore declares emergency, restricts water use after tank explosion

The City of Lemoore is under a state of emergency and a water rationing order one day after a 1.5 million-gallon municipal water tank exploded.

The explosion occurred just as a contractor was set to start welding it. A mechanical failure, as described by Lemoore Nathan Olson, led to a tsunami of water sweeping through the site and the tank itself lifted approximately 70 feet in the air, Nexstar reported.

The explosion claimed the life of 41-year-old carpenter Dion Jones and injured city worker Jeremy Climer.

The explosion knocked out all power to the city’s water treatment facility. In the interim, the city is activating back-up wells to supply residents with fresh water.

City officials warned residents not to use water to water their yards or use hoses.

PG&E has estimated restoration of power at the site at next week.

Cal-OSHA is currently investigating the circumstances of the explosion.

Staff reports from The San Joaquin Valley Sun staff.