It was nearly a year ago that Todd Ghent found himself in the middle of a fireball that threatened to take his life. The volunteer firefighter from Portland, Connecticut was at the scene of a reported propane leak on Jan. 29, 2011, when the air around him exploded. The only thing that saved his life was the instinct to hold his breath, saving his lungs from igniting with the burning gas.

Ghent was among the first firefighters who responded to the scene. He had protective gear, and with the help of another firefighter, Tim Goff, he began moving down a snow-lined driveway with a gas detection meter. Just as they reached an area between snow banks where the heavy gas had pooled, the propane ignited.

Although the source of the spark remains unknown, the Portland Fire Marshall determined that a backhoe caused the propane leak.

Ghent managed to hold his breath, keeping the burning gas, which ignites in the air at nearly 1,000 degrees, out of his lungs. His head was on fire as he dove into a snow bank to extinguish the flames.

Ghent suffered second and third degree burns to his head, face, and neck. Goff, who was about eight feet from Ghent, suffered burn injuries to his hands.

(Source: Hartford Courant)

If you or a loved one suffered a burn injury due to negligence or hazardous conditions, the Connecticut personal injury lawyers of Berkowitz and Hanna LLC may be able to help you seek compensation. Contact us for a free review of your case.