SPFD: Multi-agency response when Fillmore petroleum tank explodes

August 10, 2012
Santa Paula News

The Santa Paula Fire Department was among numerous emergency responders who were called to the scene of a petroleum tank fire that had the potential of spreading in a rugged area of Fillmore on Wednesday.

The oil storage tank exploded into flames in the hills north of Fillmore, about 10 miles from the intersection of Goodenough and Squaw Flat roads, and was reported to be ablaze at about 10:11 a.m. Firefighters didn’t have any problems reaching the fire: thick black smoke from the blaze - located a mile north of the U.S. Forest Service Station - could be seen for miles around.  

Ventura County Environmental Health, the state Department of Fish and Game and the California State Warning Center were notified of the blaze. Ventura County Fire also dispatched a full hazardous materials response team to the fire, which sent burning petroleum downhill where some brush was set ablaze. A Ventura County Sheriff’s Office helicopter also assisted in the incident, as did fire units from the cities of Ventura and Oxnard.

Although fire crews were able to quickly contain the fire, the decision was made to let the tank, which contained up to 25,000 gallons of petroleum, burn itself out. There were no injuries in the incident, which was contained by about 11 a.m.

The company where the fire occurred will handle the clean up, and county environmental health will address any concerns due to the petroleum runoff. The cause of the explosion and resultant fire is under investigation.

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