13-year-old Minnesota boy recovering after gasoline explosion

Published: May. 30, 2023 at 6:15 PM CDT
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PLUMMER, Minn. (Valley News Live) - A small town Minnesota teen is on the mend in a Twin Cities hospital after suffering severe burns from a gasoline explosion last week.

It happened at a gas station in Plummer, Minn., where 13-year-old O’Rian Rude was filling up his three-wheeler. He says it’s all still a blur for him, but says he and a friend had plans to ride their ATVs on May 21, but first stopped at a local gas station to fuel up.

“All I remember is seeing fire and just getting on the ground as fast as I could and taking everything off,” he said.

“I try not to think about what happened. I can’t imagine being fully engulfed in flames,” O’Rian’s mom Janella said.

Authorities say the three-wheeler was still running during the fill up and O’Rian was sitting on the seat when the gasoline fumes ignited and burst into flames.

“He’s very, very luck to be alive. Especially being right at the pump. Gas everywhere,” his mom said.

Suffering second and third-degree burns, O’Rian has been healing at Hennepin County Medical Center since the explosion which forced him to miss his last week of middle school.

“It’s been painful,” he said.

“Some tough moments and then some good ones. The healing is coming along pretty good. Most days it shows pretty good signs of progression and other days it’s slower and not so good,” Janella said.

O’Rian says he’s counting his lucky stars as he knows his situation could have ended a whole lot worse. He hopes his story serves as a safety message for everyone this summer to turn your vehicles off before fueling up.

Doctors say O’Rian could go home as early as this week. A GoFundMe has been set up for the family’s medical expenses. You can find it by clicking here.