MERCED, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE)- A man who was injured in a possible marijuana conversion lab explosion has died from his injuries, according to officials from the Merced County Sheriff’s office.
Deputies say Jose Salvador Palomarez, who is from Mexico, died after suffering severe burns after investigators say they believe a honey oil lab exploded inside of a home in a Merced neighborhood last Monday.
Police say the possible drug lab was discovered after officers were called out to a burning home near Derby Drive and Colma Avenue.
When officers arrived, they found a Palomarez in a neighbor’s yard suffering from severe burns across his body.
After the fire was contained, officers say they noticed visible signs of what appeared to be a honey oil lab inside of the home. Officers reportedly found several propane fuel tanks, colanders, and marijuana scattered throughout the debris.
Police say the explosion was felt blocks away from the house and caused damage to nearby homes and properties.
Officials from the Merced Police Department says it has handed over the investigation to the Department of Justice due to toxic chemicals and contamination.