Springer Memorial, WA- Victor man’s condition described as extremely

Springer Memorial – A leaky propane tank is believed to have caused a fire and possible explosion that injured a local man and destroyed his motor home Thursday evening.

Kenneth Roberts, 69, of Victor returned to his motor home at Springer Memorial, up the East Fork, and against the advice of other people in his party, attempted to light the propane heater, according to his brother Elden Roberts.

A neighbor reported earlier Thursday that there had been a small fire in the motor home.

“He lit a stove or heater and the fire resulted from that,” said Sula Volunteer Department Fire Chief Bob Wetzsteon, Friday.

He also reported there might have been a small explosion.

In spite of being burned over 40 percent of his body, Kenneth Roberts climbed into his pickup and drove to the hunting camp over a mile way.

He was taken by Life Flight to Missoula and from there transported to Harbor View Hospital in Seattle, according to Elden Roberts.

Roberts said his brother’s condition was extremely critical on Friday.

Mark Smith, a friend and hunting companion of Kenneth Roberts, hugged Elden Friday and told him what he knew.

“It was just a propane leak” Smith said.

He went with Kenneth to meet the Life Flight helicopter.

“I just did what he would have done for any of us,” Smith said.

Springer Memorial is a small cluster of homes located near the 13 mile marker of East Fork Road, near the end of the pavement in the very Southeast part of the county.

By the time Sula Fire Department arrived the motor home was fully engulfed. Before they could get it contained the motor home was nearly burned to its frame.

Whetstone said the fire was still under investigation.

Although the conflagration destroyed the motor home, a cabin less than 10 feet away was saved.