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Hazardous waste tanker catches fire in north Columbia

Monday, April 28, 2014 | 10:54 p.m. CDT
Columbia Fire Department puts out a tanker fire at Safety-Kleen Systems at 2400 Big Bear Court on Monday. The Fire Department responded to a call at 8:13 p.m. from a passerby reporting the fire in the hazardous material area.

COLUMBIA— Flames erupted from the cab and engine of a hazardous waste tanker Monday night at Safety-Kleen Systems, Inc. on Big Bear Court.

The fire did not spread to any buildings, and no one was on the premises when the fire started, Columbia Fire Department Capt. Eric Hartman said.

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A passerby reported the fire to police. Responders were dispatched to the hazardous waste facility at 8:13 p.m. and arrived at 8:17 p.m, said Lisa Todd, the public information officer for the fire department.

The vehicle's tank, which is used to transport waste oil, was empty and did not catch fire, Todd said. The truck had been used earlier that day, but firefighters were still investigating what caused the fire.

Several roads were blocked off surrounding the scene of the fire.

"We take additional precautions anytime there are hazardous materials involved," Hartman said.

Responders rely on factors such as wind direction and what they observe on-site in order to determine how much area they should block off, Todd said.

A representative from Safety-Kleen arrived on scene but was unavailable for comment. According to their website, Safety-Kleen specializes in treating used oil. The company also collects and disposes hazardous materials.


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