Thursday, November 19, 2009


Elyria – A late night fire with the threat of exploding propane tanks had Elyria Firefighters battling the fire defensively with their newest weapon – Tower 8.

An alert Elyria Police Officer, Sgt. Ryan Warfield, while on patrol spotted the fire behind a fence at A-1 Welding on Infirmary Road across the street from Westway Garden apartments. Warfield radioed for his Dispatcher to contact the Fire Department. Warfield also warned other Officers responding to the area to stay back due to large propane tanks near the fire. Police then secured the area so nobody would get close to the blaze in case of an explosion.

When Firefighters arrived they held at a safe distance while they investigated the safety of the area. It was decided by Captain Tim Mitchell of the Elyria Fire Department to fight the fire in a defensive mode by using their new Tower 8.
Tower 8 was set up a safe distance away and the Tower was extended out to its limit to shoot water onto the fire from above. Mitchell said that the Tower worked out very well for them in getting the fire under control.

While watching the fire from down the street we could hear several small exploding noises – Mitchell said that those were caused by aerosol cans. There was one point where the propane tank began venting causing a loud noise and fire was shooting high into the air. That was all brought under control shortly after Tower 8 began hitting it with water. Once the area was deemed safe Firefighters approached and finished the job with hand lines.

The property houses A1 Welding and Rowe Towing and Salvage. Mitchell said the fire started in a office building and although the cause has not yet been determined he said that according to the property owner there was a propane heater inside the structure.

There were no injuries reported.


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