The charred remains after a propane leak ignited and damaged a residential deck.

The charred remains after a propane leak ignited and damaged a residential deck.

Propane leak causes fire in barbecue

The Salmon Arm Fire Department is warning barbecue users to make sure connections are tight after one resident had a very close call.

The Salmon Arm Fire Department is warning barbecue users to make sure connections are tight after one resident had a very close call.

At 6:44 p.m. on Wednesday, June 10, Hall 2 and Hall 3 were called to a barbecue fire on a deck in the 800 block of 20th Street NE.

Assistant fire Chief Mike Bailey says response time was significantly reduced because training for first responders was taking place in the firehall on South Broadview.

Bailey says the homeowner’s quick action in pushing the barbecue away from the house also reduced the impact of the fire.

He says the propane tank had heated up and a special ventilation disk, which reduces pressure inside the tank so it doesn’t explode, released propane into the air and ignited the fire under the barbecue.

“It probably had something to do with the barbecue,” says Bailey. “He had used it previously, but yesterday there was some kind of leak in a connection or something.”

Firefighters were on scene in four minutes and quickly extinguished the fire and cooled the propane tank.

Bailey says there was minor damage to the home’s siding but the fire melted the aluminum railing.

“The tank did what it was supposed to do,” he says noting that had it exploded, someone could easily have been killed. “Be cautious in making sure connections are secure because if there is a leak, it can cause issues similar to this.”

Salmon Arm Observer