New Bedford and Dartmouth crews responded to an explosion on Rockdale Avenue Friday morning.

New Bedford Fire Chief Michael Gomes tells WBSM News around 9:30am Friday morning, an employee at Marx Auto Center at 132 Rockdale Avenue near the New Bedford/Dartmouth line was using a torch to cut through a 55-gallon steel drum that had contained windshield washer fluid. Gomes says lingering fluid or vapors inside the barrel ignited, causing the barrel to act like a rocket, hitting the ceiling and then striking the employee in the head.

The man was transported to St. Luke's Hospital for his injuries. There's no word on his condition at this time.

Chief Gomes says a resulting fire burned itself out before firefighters arrived on the scene.

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