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Hackensack Daily Voice serves Hackensack, Maywood, Rochelle Park & South Hackensack

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Smoking driver ignites oxygen tank explosions in Hackensack

Photo Credit: Cliffview Pilot

CLIFFVIEW PILOT SCOOP: An 82-year-old emphysema victim from Oakland who was smoking in his car suffered minor injuries after a fire ignited and several small oxygen tanks exploded, Hackensack police told CLIFFVIEW PILOT . Two others were injured, including a man who pulled him from the burning car before the first explosion.

People who live and work in the area told police they felt buildings shake from the blasts.

“It could have been a lot worse, considering the power those tanks have,” a Hackensack police officer with direct knowledge of the blast told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .

Stanislaw Kavalsky was smoking in his sedan on Hudson Street just north of Moonachie Road when something caught fire about 11:15 this morning, city police said.

A passerby helped Kavalsky out of the car. They were running from it when a tank exploded, smashing against the nearby Reef Encounter aquarium store.

A woman who was at the store touched the tank, sustaining a minor burn, police said. She was treated at the scene.

A police officer, concerned that someone was still inside the burning car, had to go to Hackensack University Medical Center because of ringing in his ears from the first blast.

Kavalsky also was taken to the hospital as a precaution.

As of noon, Hudson Street from the Little Ferry border north to Henry Place was closed, as was the smalls stretch of Henry Place leading from nearby River Street.

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