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Jay Leno may need skin grafts after sustaining 3rd-degree burns from ‘gasoline fire’ in his garage

A source close to Leno said the former “Tonight Show” host is receiving hyperbaric treatment.
/ Source: TODAY

Jay Leno has third-degree burns and may need skin grafts after a gasoline fire erupted in his Los Angeles-area garage on Nov. 12, a source close to the comedian told NBC News.

According to the source, the left side of Leno’s face was burned by the fire. Though his eyes were not affected, his hands were impacted by the fire, the source said.

The source went on to describe the comedian’s body below his shoulders as “fine” and said that “his feet still work.”

Currently, the 72-year-old former “Tonight Show” host is receiving hyperbaric treatment, something the source said “he has to do all the time.”

The Mayo Clinic describes hyperbaric oxygen therapy as a medical treatment that hastens the healing process from carbon monoxide poisoning, burns or other conditions. It involves providing a patient with pure oxygen to breathe in a pressurized environment.

According to the source, the fire broke out while Leno was working on his 1907 White Steam Car at his garage in Burbank, California, fixing a clogged fuel line. At some point, a fuel leak occurred, gasoline sprayed on Leno’s face, and a spark triggered the fire, the source said.

Initially, Leno was taken by ambulance to a hospital in Burbank. He was then sent to Grossman Burn Center in Los Angeles, where he remains. 

“I got some serious burns from a gasoline fire,” Leno said in a statement provided to NBC News on Nov. 14. “I am ok. Just need a week or two to get back on my feet.”

In a statement on Nov. 14, a spokesperson from West Hills Hospital & Medical Center, where Grossman Burn Center is located, confirmed Leno was in stable condition and being treated for his injuries.

"He is in good humor and is touched by all the inquiries into his condition and well wishes," Aimee Bennett, the director of strategic communications, said in an email. "He wants to let everyone know he is doing well and is in 'the best burn center in the United States.'"

The source close to Leno told NBC News that the comedian's scheduled events for the next two weeks have been canceled.

Beyond being a comedian and actor, Leno is an avid collector of classic and high-profile cars.

A year after leaving his position as the host of “The Tonight Show,” Leno returned to television with a show about cars and motorcycles called “Jay Leno’s Garage.” 

“The show will be about anything that rolls, explodes, and makes noise,” Leno said of the series in 2014 before its launch. “We hope to highlight the passion and the stories behind the men and women who made the automobile the greatest invention of the 20th century.”

According to CNBC, “Jay Leno’s Garage,” whose most recent and seventh season aired its last episode on Oct. 26, will not be affected by the host's recent accident.