Man cooking hashish oil caused Forest Grove home explosion

Man cooking hashish oil caused Forest Grove home explosion
Police said a man cooking hashish oil caused a large explosion at a Forest Grove home, injuring himself and four other people. (Photo by Forest Grove Police)

FOREST GROVE, Ore. – Police arrested a Forest Grove man who they said was cooking hashish oil when he caused a large explosion at his home, injuring five people Monday night.

Officers responded to a home at 1908 C Street at around 9:15 p.m. after neighbors reported a "loud boom", followed by a man running up and down the street screaming that he had been burned.

A ten-day-old infant and a one-year-old child were injured in the blast, along with two women. Police did not release their names. They were taken to a hospital, but later released.

Bernard Frank Heflin, 22, (photo at right) initially told police he was cooking eggs when the explosion occurred, but later he admitted he was cooking hashish oil, a concentrated substance made from marijuana. Hashish is made by using butane gas to strip the oil off marijuana. Butane is heavier than air and can collect on the floor where it can sometimes ignite.

Police said making hashish oil is not only a felony, but it's extremely dangerous due to toxic and flammable fumes emitted during the process.

Some of the walls of the home were bowed out and several items were knocked off the walls in the explosion. Police said there was "significant damage" to the structure.

There is no damage estimate at this time. Police said they recovered evidence from the damaged home.

Heflin was treated for burns at a hospital, then arrested. He faces charges of manufacturing a controlled substance and two counts each of reckless endangering, criminal mistreatment, child neglect and endangering the welfare of a minor.

Police said they are working with the Department of Human Services to make sure the children are safe.

In November of last year, a medical marijuana patient was severely burned by an explosion while he was making hashish oil.

That explosion blew out a wall of his Washington County apartment and propelled household items at least 50 feet.