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World War II Tank Explodes In Rural Oregon, Killing Two

Local and state police have announced the death of two people who were killed earlier this afternoon after a vintage World War II tank exploded. The incident occurred at a location adjacent to a public firing range 25 miles east of Bend, Oregon.

First responders arrived on the scene at around 3 p.m. this afternoon in response to the reported explosion, including Deschutes County sheriff’s deputies, Bend fire medics, and even an AirLink helicopter. Paramedics attempted to save the two who were injured by the blast, according to Sergeant Nathan Garibay, but the injuries sustained were too great; they died on the scene.

Police detectives are conducting a joint investigation of the explosion with the Oregon State Police Arson and Explosives Section, Garibay said.

Central Oregon’s KTVZ reports that officers have been gathering evidence from the scene, and will be releasing more information after the families of the victims have been properly notified.

The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office posted an update on the situation on Twitter, stating that “there is no further risk to the public.”

Attempts to contact the nearby firing range, the Shooting Sports Association, for more information regarding the incident, have gone unanswered.

The explosion occurred near milepost 24 on Highway 20 in an area south of the Ochoco National Forest.

KBND announced that preliminary reports from the scene suggest that the two victims were men, one in his 20s and the other in his 60s.

No other details are known at this time.

Earlier this year, a gas explosion in Harlem, New York leveled two buildings and killed three people, creating tremors felt more than a mile away.

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