Local man sent to Vancouver with severe burns

A Williams Lake man is in a coma in a Vancouver hospital after he was severely burned while changing a fuel pump on his truck last Wednesday.

A Williams Lake man is in a coma in a Vancouver hospital after he was severely burned while changing a fuel pump on his truck last Wednesday.

Brent Holm, 45, was working on the truck at his parents’ home on Second Avenue when his mother, Marian Holm, saw on the home’s surveillance camera that her son was on fire.

“We figure it was because it was extremely hot that evening, and the exhaust pipes were extremely hot on his vehicle,” says Brent’s father, George Holm, adding there may have been some static electricity that caused a spark. “The gas out of the fuel line had landed on his chest.”

He says Brent was wearing Carhartt pants, which fortunately saved part of his body, but his face, right arm, right shoulder, and back were severely burned. Marian watched on the monitor as Brent climbed out from underneath his truck covered in flames.

“When he went by the stairway, he hollered, ‘Mom’ and ran out and rolled in the grass on the lawn,” George says. “And then Mom got the water hose.”

After spraying him with water, Marian then called for an ambulance, which took him to Cariboo Memorial Hospital shortly after the incident Wednesday evening. He was then sent to Vancouver’s burn centre via helicopter.

“He is doing as well as expected, they (doctors) said, which isn’t very good at the present time,” George says. “He’s burnt so deeply.

“He’s in a coma. He’s burned that badly.”

George says medical staff had expected to do skin grafts on Monday, but those plans were being delayed until physicians further evaluated his condition yesterday.

George says friends and family are raising funds to help Brent, a welding contractor, who will miss work for an indefinite period of time as a result of the incident. An account, the Brent Holm Burn Victim Fund, has been set up at the Williams Lake & District Credit Union for the cause.

“He’s got mortgage payments and all of the rest,” George says. “It’s going to be a long, long haul.”

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