Transfer truck catches fire on I-20

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By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor

A potentially-dangerous truck fire broke out on I-20 near the 125 mile-marker on the afternoon of Monday, Jan 11. The County Fire Rescue discovered the transfer truck carrying large bundles of used cardboard and a forklift, with its load on fire. According to Jeff Stone, Morgan County Fire Chief, reports indicated that the fire was getting too close to the propane tank of the forklift, leading officials to fear an explosion could occur at any moment if the fire was not quickly extinguished. “Flames had been impinging on the propane tank mounted on the Forklift,” said Stone. “Personnel quickly doused the flames on the forklift to elevate a BLEVE (Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion) from occurring. The fire was quickly controlled with the use of water and FOAM. The FOAM is an additive that helps suppress the heat and vapors of a fire, allowing for a quicker extinguishment. ”Station 8 and Station 16 responded to a Georgia State Patrol (GSP) trooper, who had pulled the truck over, in less than 10 minutes. The surrounding portion of I-20 was closed off while firefighters tended to the scene. “Once the fire was controlled, it was decided to move the transfer truck (safety reasons and to open the Expressway back up) to the next exit (Exit 121) to get it off I-20 where further extinguishment was able to be done,” explained Stone. According to Stone, Fire units followed the transfer truck to the exit and began overhaul procedures. “This consisted of removing all the bundled cardboard off the trailer and tearing it apart to be sure that all ember and smoldering pieced were completely extinguished. The transfer truck and trucking personnel were left to load and remove the debris into roll dumpsters.” Neither the driver nor the firefighters were injured during the fire.

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