DANA POINT (CBSLA.com) — A 31-year-old man was hospitalized Wednesday after being burned in an explosion in a Dana Point garage, possibly sparked by a pot-extracting lab, authorities said.

A blast in a garage in the 26800 block of Vista del Mar happened about noon Tuesday and started a fire that spread to some trees, a studio apartment, a condominium complex and an apartment complex, firefighters said.

Investigators found a dead dog, marijuana and butane in the garage after the explosion, Orange County sheriff’s Lt. Jeff Hallock said.

The hospitalized man, who has not been arrested, suffered burns to his face, chest, arms and legs. Investigators believe the man, whose name was not released, was using the butane to extract THC, the psychoactive ingredient of marijuana.

The damage estimate to the structures and contents is about $270,000.

Orange County bomb squads have investigated at least a half-dozen butane explosions related to THC extraction over the past 18 months, according to the Orange County Register.

THC-extraction explosions have also happened outside Orange County. Last week, a 30-year-old man was suffered burn wounds over his body after an explosion in Moreno Valley. Authorities found a lab used to extract concentrated oil from marijuana, a Riverside County sheriff’s sergeant said.

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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