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Aug-04-2017 15:58printcomments

Propane Tank Ignites Inside Shop While Blacksmithing

Fire officials believe that a leaking valve may be to blame.

propane fire
Photo: Lebanon Fire Dist.

(LEBANON, Ore.) - Lebanon firefighters quickly contained a fire from a venting propane tank inside the detached shop of a home on Arlene Avenue on Thursday afternoon.

Firefighters were called at 12:34 p.m. to 2635 Arlene Avenue and arrived to find a 20-lb. propane tank on fire inside of an approximately 20'x30' shop.

A resident had been using a propane torch connected to the tank for some blacksmithing work and when the torch came within the area of the tank it erupted in fire. One juvenile was evaluated by paramedics on scene and did not require treatment.

Fire officials believe that a leaking valve may be to blame.

Firefighters entered the structure and used a hose stream to hydraulically push the fire away from them as they attempted to close the valve by hand. When propane is under pressure, a simple water stream will often not extinguish the flames so a fog stream from a fire hose can offer a protected space and allow firefighters to get close enough to the container to close the valve.

In this case, however, the valve handle had already melted away so fire crews were unable to shut off the gas supply.

Crews continued to cool the tank and allow it to burn off the fuel while controlling the flames with fire streams and watching for extension into the structure or its contents.

After roughly 10 minutes, the contents of the tank had vented enough that the flames could be extinguished and the threat was mitigated.

Fire officials would like to remind residents to use extreme caution when performing hot work and that open flame or hot work of any kind outside is currently banned in Linn County.

For more information on fire safety contact the Lebanon Fire District at 541-451-1901.

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