When two leaky 1,800-gallon propane tanks caught fire at the Coca-Cola plant in Baltimore County, Md., last week, the Washington County Special Operations Team and a local heating company went to the rescue.
On Thursday, a forklift operator at the plant had damaged the propane tanks, which leaked several hundred gallons of the flammable liquid, said John Bentley, special ops deputy coordinator.
Firefighters from Baltimore County put out the 50-foot flames shooting from the tanks but the heat had melted the valves, making it impossible to shut them off completely, Bentley said.
Most of the propane was transferred to another receptacle but the remaining propane and vapor had to be burned off. The process required an industrial-size torch that was unavailable in Baltimore County, said Bentley.