SALEM, N.H. (CBS) – An employee at a New Hampshire Sears was killed Saturday morning when a tire exploded, police say.

Salem Police say Justin Almon, 22, of Sandown, N.H., was working on a tire at Sears Auto Center in the Mall at Rockingham Park when the tire exploded. 911 callers were frantic, with one saying “They were filling up a tire and it exploded!”

“It’s an industrial tire changer, where the tire is mounted on the rim and it seals it into place and then it inflates at the same time,” says Salem Police Sgt. Chad Clark. “So the whole tire and rim came up and the victim was leaning over we think, and that’s when it hit him in the head.”

Justin Almon (WBZ-TV)

Justin Almon (WBZ-TV)

Almon was transported to Parkland Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

Adam Sproud, 23, of Maine was a customer in the store at the time of the accident. He was brought to Lawrence General Hospital and airlifted to Boston Medical Center with a serious head injury.

Initial investigation indicates that Almon was fixing a large truck tire when the explosion occurred.

Occupational Safety and Health Administration officials are investigating the accident along with Salem Police.

A Sears in Salem, N.H., was closed for the day after an employee was killed while fixing a tire. (Tom Bravo/WBZ)

A Sears in Salem, N.H., was closed for the day after an employee was killed while fixing a tire. (Tom Bravo/WBZ)

Sears issued a statement about the accident.

“First and foremost, our thoughts and prayers are with the family of our associate, and we send our deepest condolences to them. We also send our thoughts and concerns to our customer who was injured in this tragic accident. We are working closely with local authorities as they investigate this matter,” the company said.

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