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FT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A fiery scene unfolded after a car crashed into an apartment complex in Fort Pierce on the 4th of July.

Carl Philbert, 31, loaded propane tanks into the car and rammed it into the apartment building where his former girlfriend lived just before 1 p.m., according to police.

“We heard a boom, we thought it was the trash, because it was a trash day; then we heard another boom; I looked out the window and saw the car that was on fire,” said Tyler Freeman.

Philbert died in the crash and explosion which sent flames up to the second floor of the building.

The fire forced eighteen people out of their homes, including five children.

The American Red Cross responded to help with shelter and food for the displaced residents.