11 episodes

July 5th, 1973 - A railcar sits on a spur of the Santa Fe Railroad. For about a month, it has served as a "holding tank" for 33,000 gallons of propane gas belonging to the nearby DOXOL Gas Plant.​The time has come for DOXOL employees to retrieve the gas from the tanker to be stored at the plant. But, during the process of offloading the gas, something goes TERRIBLY wrong... The disaster KILLS 12, 11 who were firemen and MAIMS approximately 100 innocent citizens of the small town of Kingman, Arizona. This is the UNTOLD, TRUE STORY of the Kingman Arizona BLEVE of '73, with witness and expert accounts describing every flinching detail from the day of, to the weeks and months after the tragedy that forever changed Kingman, and the world.

WE NEED ICE - Explosion on the Railroad Meg Maran

    • True Crime
    • 4.8 • 12 Ratings

July 5th, 1973 - A railcar sits on a spur of the Santa Fe Railroad. For about a month, it has served as a "holding tank" for 33,000 gallons of propane gas belonging to the nearby DOXOL Gas Plant.​The time has come for DOXOL employees to retrieve the gas from the tanker to be stored at the plant. But, during the process of offloading the gas, something goes TERRIBLY wrong... The disaster KILLS 12, 11 who were firemen and MAIMS approximately 100 innocent citizens of the small town of Kingman, Arizona. This is the UNTOLD, TRUE STORY of the Kingman Arizona BLEVE of '73, with witness and expert accounts describing every flinching detail from the day of, to the weeks and months after the tragedy that forever changed Kingman, and the world.

    PART 1: BOOM ATOP THE TRAIN - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    PART 1: BOOM ATOP THE TRAIN - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    On July 5th, 1973, the, “We Need Ice” message was broadcast across a dedicated Kingman Arizona radio station. The local hospital requesting ice cubes from residents’ freezers? What on earth for?
    It was for the bodies. The dozens of human bodies burned alive from a railcar propane explosion, also known as a BLEVE. If you know anything about burn injuries, you know they are the most devastating to the body and the most excruciating in pain. The ice was for the bodies. The bodies that were still alive, burning from the inside out.

    Visit this podcast's website at WENEEDICE.COM for more on the 1973 Kingman, Arizona BLEVE.


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    • 13 min
    PART 2: THE BIG BLEVE - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    PART 2: THE BIG BLEVE - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    One Doxol worker is dead from the explosion atop rail car #38214 which occurred on July 5, 1973 in Kingman, Arizona.
    Kingman Firefighters, mostly volunteers, race to the scene to extinguish the fire and prevent another propane accident. Time is not on their side as the tank car, full of flammable gas, sits burning in the hundred-degree desert. Town residents and travelers along Route 66 begin to corral around the flaming tanker.
    In his testimonial, Kingman Firefighter, Oscar Lopez recounts the events, sounds, chaos, and the overwhelming HEAT of July 5, 1973. Additional testimonials describe the disaster down to the button, proving that memories like those from July 5, 1973, live, in-tact forever, in the minds of all affected.

    Visit this podcast's website at WENEEDICE.COM for more on the 1973 Kingman, Arizona BLEVE.


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    • 29 min
    PART 3: BURNING FLESH & HOSPITAL MAYHEM - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    PART 3: BURNING FLESH & HOSPITAL MAYHEM - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    A man lies in the street, arms stretched out as he tries to crawl to safety. Pain and fear are conveyed across his badly burned face, totally black, just a thin mohawk of singed hair runs down the center of his crown. His pants have been mostly burned off him and the skin on his exposed limbs can only be described as paper mache’-like, pieces of flesh dangling loosely.
    Witness and Kingman resident, “K,” wastes no time jumping into her role during the disaster aftermath. She rushes to the county hospital to provide any aid possible, and boy do they need it!
    The details surrounding the victims of the ’73 BLEVE do NOT soothe the mind and body -  Burn injuries, the wounds of the Kingman BLEVE victims, hospital mayhem, families in crisis and human suffering. It all ties into the “We Need Ice” message and you’ll find out exactly what that message meant and why it is so prevalent in telling this story.

    Visit this podcast's website at WENEEDICE.COM for more on the 1973 Kingman, Arizona BLEVE.


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    • 22 min
    PART 4: THE AFTERMATH & KINGMAN STRONG - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    PART 4: THE AFTERMATH & KINGMAN STRONG - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    The death toll rises each day for the small town of Kingman, Arizona in the weeks following July 5, 1973.
    Witness and hospital volunteer, “K,” remembers how fellow Kingman residents stepped up to care for the children of those families whose head-of-households were either injured or deceased.  She engages in one of the hardest conversations of her life, when the young daughter of a burned firefighter innocently repeats what she’s hearing from her peers. “Someone said my Daddy’s a DEAD MAN. K my Daddy is NOT a DEAD MAN right?”
    Despite the tragedy, turmoil and tears, the town of Kingman will triumph as they ban together to honor those lost and share in recovery efforts inspiring courage and community.

    Visit this podcast's website at WENEEDICE.COM for more on the 1973 Kingman, Arizona BLEVE.
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    • 17 min
    PART 5: DOXOL - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    PART 5: DOXOL - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    Amongst the scandals, crime and natural disasters occurring and being packaged in today’s news stories, editorials and talk shows for public review, there’s always the 64-thousand-dollar question: Who is at fault? Someone has to pay, and especially when lives are lost.
    Video footage surfaces showing the town of Kingman post BLEVE of 1973 - Doxol branded trucks and gas storage tanks parked on the industrial plant’s property, giant pieces of metal shrapnel from the exploding tanker block Route 66, and dilapidated structures which were just moments before standing strong, like the Philips gas station, reveal what looks like a ghost town.
    Kingman is searching for answers, and the Doxol Propane company begins to take questions.

    Visit this podcast's website at WENEEDICE.COM for more on the 1973 Kingman, Arizona BLEVE.


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    • 19 min
    PART 6: FIREFIGHTING REVAMPED - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    PART 6: FIREFIGHTING REVAMPED - We Need Ice - The Kingman BLEVE True Story

    If necessity is the mother of invention, then mass casualties are the catalyst of reinvention. If anything positive was going to come out of this disaster, it was going to be improving practices for managing such events in order to avoid repeating history.
    9-11 has been brought up, more than once, with witness accounts of the Kingman Bleve. After September 11, 2001, changes were employed for safer air travel. Similarly, the 1973 Kingman BLEVE influenced protocols for transporting liquid gas, firefighting, and handling explosions worldwide. 
    The procedural modifications implemented because of the Kingman BLEVE were necessary alterations put in place to save lives.

    Visit this podcast's website at WENEEDICE.COM for more on the 1973 Kingman, Arizona BLEVE.


    Privacy PolicyAttribution/Music & Sound Credits

    • 18 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
12 Ratings

12 Ratings

Mark Nosrati ,

Captivating and very thorough

I think this story really needed a deep dive and that’s exactly what it got. From the first episode, this show will have your ears glued to every detail. Meg is an extraordinary storyteller and excellent at interviewing. I didn’t skip an episode and I rarely ever do that.

podgal3906 ,

Lots of research went into this

The most informative portrayal of this event out there without losing the emotional aspect, gritty details, and graphic nature of what truly happened.

livordieee ,

Amazing!

Im not usually a podcast person but, wow! Meg really does a fantastic job of telling a super descriptive and enticing story that you can’t stop listening to! Give it a listen!