2 adults, 1 student injured after boiler room explosion blows top off tower at Baltimore Co. school

An explosion in a boiler room at the McDonogh School in Owings Mill, Maryland, injured two adults a child Sept. 18. (Courtesy NBC Washington)
An explosion in a boiler room at the McDonogh School in Owings Mill, Maryland, injured two adults a child Sept. 18. (Courtesy NBC Washington)
The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground. (Courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department
The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground. (Courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department)
The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground. (Courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department)
The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground. (Courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department)
<p>The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground.</p>
The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground. (Courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department)
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An explosion in a boiler room at the McDonogh School in Owings Mill, Maryland, injured two adults a child Sept. 18. (Courtesy NBC Washington)
The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground. (Courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department
The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground. (Courtesy Baltimore County Fire Department)
<p>The explosion caused the top portion of a smokestack to crumble to the ground.</p>

An explosion inside a boiler room at a Baltimore County school Wednesday morning blew the top off a smokestack and sent bricks flying, injuring two adults and a student.

The Baltimore County Fire Department was called to the McDonogh School in Owings Mills, Maryland, at about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday for the report of the explosion, said Elise Armacost, public affairs director for the department.

The two adults who were injured were working inside a maintenance building at the time of the explosion, Armacost said. The student appears to have been hit by a piece of debris.

All of the injuries appeared to be minor, but the student and one of the adults were taken to the hospital, the fire department spokeswoman said.

She called the explosion “highly unusual.” The Maryland Occupational Safety and Health Division agency is expected to investigate.

Photos taken by the fire department, as well as video gathered by news helicopters flying over the scene, showed the jagged top of the smokestack on the school’s campus surrounded by a large pile of bricks on the ground below.

“When the fire department arrived, the first thing they did was set up a collapse zone, because they saw that the top of the tower had been blown off; there were bricks strewn about,” Armacost said. “So the danger of collapse was the first issue.”

Student Roc Dimico, 18, told reporters he heard a loud “boom” Wednesday morning followed by a “big smoke cloud” coming from the smokestack tower.

“There were a couple of kids that had to run away from the bricks when it fell,” he said. “It was pretty crazy.”

The private boarding school, for students in prekindergarten through 12th grade, is about 20 miles northwest of Baltimore City.

WTOP’s Melissa Howell contributed to this report.

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