1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber

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    Northern Michigan
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    Default Propane leak along highway

    I'm a member of a small vollie department in Michigan, and last week we're called to a strong smell of gas near a propane distribution center along a state highway. Upon arrival a south wind was noted blowing a good sized cloud of propane across the highway. We took nescessary action to coordinate w/ law and shut down the road. We then called in the keyholder and further investigated. However, a so called bystander informed a local board member that we had positioned the rig in an unsafe position. Being as though the road was shut down and there was no bystanders near by, I feel as if there is some inside fighting between officers. I was wondering if anyone could point me in the right direction to be better prepared for this situation next time and revise our sops for such call. Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks.

  2. #2
    Forum Member

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    Feb 2002
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    Default propane leak

    Great place to start is using the North American Emergency Response Guidebook, has initial isolation distances etc.

  3. #3
    Junior Member

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    May 2001
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    Rochester, NY, USA
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    Default

    The obvious answer to your question is to position yourself upwind a safe distance away as noted in the NAERG, which by law should be on your apparatus. Also, remember that if a diesel engine ingests flammable vapors, it will burn them in the form of extremely high RPM's until the engine fails, or until such time as you ignite the vapors back to the source and blow the whole scene up.

    Bottom line is to give flammable vapors (especially propane, because it is heavier than air)a VERY wide berth. Take care of the life safety issue and STAY BACK !!

    Stay safe.......

  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber

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    Hanford Fire
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    Default

    NAERG is a great start, but my concern was the board member that seems to have taken likely to operational issues. Board members are policy makers not operational doers. The civilian telling the board member of what they saw is one thing, and the board member telling the chief of what might have occurred is ok, but the board member getting into the operations end of the house just doe not seem right. Maybe I am reading information into the problem, and if so I apolgize.

    BC Zimm

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber

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    Default

    No apology required Capt. As firefighters we are also concerned w/ the boards intervention. Our job is stressful enough not having to worry if the board is going to react to a fire scene decision. Thanks for your help.

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