Railroad car leak in downtown Fayetteville

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Crews burned off gas during the cleanup process

Hazmat crews are taking care of a propane gas leak in Downtown Fayetteville.

The small leak came from a railcar that stopped on the tracks along Blount and Winslow Streets shortly before noon Monday.

Hazmat crews said the railcar was carrying 30,000 gallons of liquid propane. It's unclear how little of the substance actually leaked, but what came out did not pose an environmental or health threat.

"Propane in its normal storage is approximately 44 degrees below zero," said Calvin Bishop, a Battalion Chief with the Fayetteville Fire Department's Hazmat squad. "So what has come out of it has frozen into place, which kind of makes it a self-sealing patch."

Because the propane immediately froze, Bishop said there wasn't any detectable gas that posed a threat to those around the leak.

"We currently have monitors placed throughout (downtown)," said Bishop. "We're not picking up any propane gas on our meters and we're as close as within 100 feet of the tank car itself."

American Phoenix, a rubber mixing business on Blount Street, was evacuated for logistics. Bishop said the evacuation was made because the business was so close to the leaking tank, and in order to clean up and remove the railcars.

As the fuel was transferred to another rail car, a huge flame could be seen shooting into the air as crews burned off vapors.

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