Created 4-Sep-12
Modified 4-Sep-12
Visitors 141
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Shortly before 8 a.m. Tuesday May 31st, Baltimore County Fire Department Engine 2 (Pikesville career station) was dispatched to the 1800 block of Hillside Road in the Stevenson area (Box 2-4) for an odor of gas. Shortly after arriving, Engine 2’s crew determined the odor was coming from a leaking 300 pound propane tank that was under a house and requested BCoFD HazMat units from Station 14 (Brooklandville), which responded with HazMat 114 and Foam 14, and from Station 13 (Westview), which responded with Engine 13 and Satellite HazMat 13. An emergency response was also requested from the Maryland Department of the Environment, which responded with two units. Crews determined there was a rusted portion of the tank, which was allowing the product to escape. Firefighters reported a vapor was visibly coming from the tank and down a hill nearing neighboring homes. The incident commander determined the propane would have to be emptied from the tank and requested a response from the vendor, Suburban Propane. Due to the high temperatures, lack of hydrants in the area, and an expected lengthy process, command requested several additional engines, a Tanker Strike Team, medic unit and Rehab 156 (Box 234 Association). Shortly after arrival, MDE units began setting up a "flaring" technique to route the product out of the container and burn off the propane so there is no product left in the compromised container. The process is similar to using a backyard propane gas grill where the propane gas is funneled from the tank through a house and to the grill. The crew on Engine Tanker 503 (Chestnut Ridge) set up a 3,500 gallon portable folding water tank (similar to a small above ground swimming pool) which served as a water supply. Baltimore County Fire Department Engine 1 (Towson career) served as the drafting engine, and ET 503 (CRVFC), Gamber & Community Fire Company Engine Tanker 133 from Carroll County, and Engine Tanker 431 from Arcadia Volunteer Fire Company dumped their 2,500 gallons of water into the tank at least 7 times (17,500 gallons of water total) to maintain a water supply. Firefighters from Pikesville Volunteer Fire Company Engine 321 coordinated the tanker fill operation from a hydrant 1.5 miles away at Greenspring Ave and Woodvalley Road. Shortly before 12 noon, the tank’s contents were burned off and units cleared the scene.

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