Massive Explosions and Fires Rock Michigan Propane Plant

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

A fire at a propane plant engulfed a semi-truck loaded with tanks, setting of several explosions Tuesday, fire officials said.
Flames spread from a building at the a Reliance Propane & Fuel Oil plant to a stack of tanks that then exploded. Minutes later the fire destroyed the tractor trailer parked just outside the building.
Video of the scene showed the fire setting explosions that could be heard at least a half-mile away in Monroe County near Toledo, Ohio.
All of the employees apparently got out safely, said Bedford Fire Capt. Bob Young.
Firefighters began pulling back from the plant before the tanks started exploding. They were staying a mile away from the plant, which is in a rural area near a few industrial businesses and a handful of homes.
"There's nobody in there trying to fight it right now," said David Kehres, a captain with the Erie Fire Department. "It'd be a losing battle. There's too many explosions."
He said the plant is a filling station for propane tanks, including those used in backyard grills.
"There's really no way of putting out a propane fire," Dave Harmon, spokesman for Reliance Propane, told WDIV television in Detroit.
He said firefighters decided to let the fire burn.
A message was left seeking comment with Reliance Propane in Toledo.
Firefighters went door-to-door evacuating residents and workers at the plants nearby.

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