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Huge 6 Alarm Fire in San Bruno-- Freeways gridlocked

Original post made by Sharon on Sep 9, 2010

280 and 101 are affected into and out of SF---

Firefighters are responding to a large fire burning on a hillside in the San Bruno area.

Television live shots show large flames shooting into the air. A South San Francisco fire official confirmed firefighters were responding to a fire, but had no other details

Witnesses say a loud explosion was felt just before the flames erupted around 6 p.m. Thursday.

Comments (5)

Posted by Walter_E_Wallis, a resident of Midtown
on Sep 9, 2010 at 7:26 pm

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

I hope Palo Alto's hill fire station is staffed.

Posted by Sharon, a resident of Midtown
on Sep 9, 2010 at 8:20 pm

Amazing to see how explosive a regular gas main can be-- AQ unfortunately has tried this out in Asia.
An interesting detail is that the FD do not put out the fireball until they have turned off the valves--which takes some time due to the PSI-- if they just put out the fire the gas -- which is heavier than air-- would just spread and create a potentiality much larger problem when it finds an ignition source.
up to 45 homes destroyed so far.
There must be an engineering solution to the psi issue-- what happens in an earthquake?

Posted by Nora Charles, a resident of Stanford
on Sep 9, 2010 at 10:30 pm

The footage on TV is just devastating. A newsman just held a mic out and the hissing sound of gas was clearly audible.

Sharon, if there is an earthquake, I fear we will be in dire straits. I am packing an emergency suitcase tonight.

Posted by RS, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Sep 9, 2010 at 11:08 pm

Natural Gas is lighter than air.
Propane is heaver than air.

Propane because it is heavier than air is more dangerous. It can pool in an area for a long time. Appliances that run on propane require drain pans in case they leak.

Sad to hear people lost their homes, but glad to hear many escaped before their houses went up.

Posted by Nora Charles, a resident of Stanford
on Sep 9, 2010 at 11:14 pm

Does anyone know what could have caused the gas main line to explode? Is this (I hope and assume) a pretty rare occurrence?

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