Columbia man injured in boat explosion at Lake of the Ozarks

Monday, September 16, 2013 | 6:56 p.m. CDT; updated 7:29 p.m. CDT, Monday, September 16, 2013

COLUMBIA — A Columbia man was seriously injured after his boat exploded Saturday afternoon at Lake of the Ozarks.

David L. Thompson, 44, was airlifted to University Hospital after suffering first- and second-degree burns, said Cpl. Dean Bartlett of the Water Patrol Division of the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

The explosion, which occurred at 1:12 p.m., left Thompson with second-degree burns from the waist up and first-degree burns from the waist down, Bartlett said.

Thompson was in good condition Monday afternoon, MU Health Care spokesman Colin Planalp said.

Two other Columbia residents were on the boat when it exploded. Brittany A. Bradley suffered a moderate laceration on her foot and was taken to Lake Regional Hospital by ambulance. Another passenger, Ethan Meyers, wasn't injured.

"The owner of the boat was doing something in the engine compartment and an unknown spark ignited, causing an explosion," Bartlett said.

The highway patrol said it doesn't know what Thompson was working on in the engine compartment or what caused the spark.

"He was in serious condition," Bartlett said. "I really couldn't talk to him."

The explosion destroyed the inside of the boat but didn't cause visible damage to the exterior, Bartlett said.

Supervising editor is Richard Webner.

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