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Authorities say honey oil lab explosions are becoming concerning trend

SPRINGVILLE, Calif. - A house explosion and fire in Springville is being investigated by Tulare County Sheriff's detectives. Everything but a detached garage was burned to the ground while three people were inside. Now a 15-month-old baby boy is fighting for his life.

Flames and smoke rose in Springville, Friday morning. Firefighters responded just before 5 A.M. Officials say crews discovered what looked like a honey oil lab inside the home.

"The butane containers definitely indicate a honey oil lab and those are incredibly flammable, that the butane containers and the labs themselves, are very dangerous," said Ashley Ritchie with the Tulare County Sheriff's Office.

The Tulare County Sheriff's Office sent its gang and narcotics enforcement team to the fire. Two butane canisters were found. Meanwhile, the three people living inside the home were rushed to CRMC. A 15-month-old boy is in critical condition. His pregnant mother and his father could face child endangerment charges.

On Thursday, a house fire in Fresno was reportedly caused by a honey lab explosion according to police. The Department of Justice spent much of the day gathering evidence. Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims says these labs help produce concentrated marijuana.

"And this is what's used in edibles and soft drinks and candy bars. That's what they use in edible marijuana products," said Mims.

Mims says four pounds of concentrated marijuana have been found at five honey oil labs so far this year. A trend Mims calls disturbing.

"It's a trend that's going up and getting more concerning, not completely unpredictable because of the legalization of marijuana," said Mims.

Clovis Police investigated a drug related explosion Friday morning. A car was engulfed in flames and investigators suspect a butane tank inside could be the cause. Making it a total of three blazes connected to alleged drug activity in 24 hours.


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