ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A Petersburg man was injured Tuesday night when he and four buddies set off explosives on an abandoned logging road.
Zebediah Sipper, 20, was in guarded condition Wednesday at Seattle's Harborview Medical Center. Alaska State Troopers said he suffered a depressed skull fracture when flying debris struck him after the five men set off explosives in an aluminum culvert under the gravel road.
''This is just, 'Hey, look, let's go blow something up,''' trooper spokesman Greg Wilkinson said. ''It had no legitimate purpose.''
Also present were Sipper's brother Anthony, 25, and Petersburg residents Erik Trask, 23, Tyler Olsen, 21, and Mark Olsen, 20.
A trooper stopped Anthony Sipper for speeding near Mile 12 of the Mitkof Highway in Petersburg about 11 p.m. Sipper told the trooper he needed to get his brother to a hospital, and the trooper told him to follow his patrol car into town.
An ambulance met the cars along the way and transported Zebediah Sipper to Petersburg Medical Center. From there he was flown to Seattle.
Trask said one of the men obtained some explosives and the five went out blasting stumps along the road, which he said hasn't been used in 10 or 15 years. Then they targeted the culvert. Trask said he had no idea where his pal got the explosives.
According to troopers, the five men stood behind a vehicle to watch the culvert blow up. When the explosion detonated, a large rock flew into the air and hit Sipper in the head.
Troopers notified the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms of the incident and also called the Army's Firearms and Explosive Ordinance Disposal Unit to check the scene.
Sipper was scheduled to undergo surgery Wednesday. His injuries were not believed to be life threatening.
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