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Two oil tanks that caught fire at an Arizona plant were a challenge to put out. Twenty-nine firefighters relied on 3 water tenders to bring the blaze under control.
The fire caught at a Vulcan Materials plant in Marana, Ariz., on the afternoon of Monday, Sept. 22. Two 3,500 gallon oil tanks were set ablaze by a cause yet unknown. Heavy black smoke that rose from the plant could be seen from miles away. Northwest Fire District, along with an engine from Picture Rocks Fire District, responded after they received a call at 2:22 p.m.
Vulcan Materials Company, a producer of construction aggregates, operates several hundred plants, primarily in the South. The oil tanks at Marana were used in the production of asphalt.
The primary goal of first responders was to prevent the fire from spreading to propane tanks about 125 feet away. The tanks, filled with 1,000 gallons of propane, could have caused a disaster if caught.
The initial crew used 15 gallons of class B fire extinguisher foam to tackle part of the fire. Because oil products were enflamed, water was not sufficient for quick results. Later, an additional crew brought 55 gallons of class B concentrate, which, when mixed with water, created about 1000 gallons of foam.
Obtaining water was a big challenge. Responders had to tap into a nearby well to finish the job.
In less than half an hour, the fire was brought under control. No injuries were reported.
"We are grateful to Northwest Fire Department for quickly responding," Vulcan Materials said in a statement. "We are working closely with authorities to gather information concerning the incident and to ensure a thorough investigation."
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