Jefferson County Nixon rescue crews Italy Maine
Residents in Sevier County had to evacuate after officials believe a lightning strike started a fire that caused a liquid oxygen tank to explode. 8-20-14
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00:00 Residents and severe county had to evacuate earlier tonight after
00:04 officials believe a lightning strikes started a fire. That cost a
00:07 liquid oxygen chain to explode. It happened in Douglas stand in
00:11 severe pull on the French broad river. The BB AR ten
00:15 news reporter -- -- -- joins us live from that area
00:18 with more on this developing story Steve what can you tell
00:21 us. Well guys right now we actually get some good news
00:25 to report that -- within the last ten minutes. -- and
00:29 gave an all clear that folks here within this one mile
00:32 -- area. One mile radius area of this fire off --
00:35 Douglas dam road. Game Kodak are now allowed to return home
00:39 if you can see right now next couple secretary BC Nixon
00:43 cars passing by here and as we've been seeing over the
00:45 last couple minutes. Cars of folks think thank goodness this ended
00:48 after a couple hours of that pretty scary situation again offered.
00:52 Douglas dam now what -- -- what we do know at
00:55 this point very limited information that we were not able to
00:57 get to the fire because. Again of the evacuation for the
01:01 safety of us here. Where we're located right now it's kind
01:04 of the meeting area with all began Jones isn't all that
01:07 rescue crews. This is just between I like to see these
01:10 Smart served number three again this is often Douglas dam road.
01:14 In Kodak image you can see right now they're starting to
01:17 clear things up. Folks are able to return home what we
01:20 are being told right now as we can pop -- some
01:22 video I hope we can't at this moment. Is that Italy
01:25 -- oxygen tank. Maine had exploded sometime around 8 o'clock hour
01:29 this evening he called a fire huge evacuated several campgrounds including.
01:34 The head of water campground the -- water campground. And mountain
01:38 lake range now that's all the severe county side. We're also
01:41 told that if you go across the -- and go into
01:43 Jefferson County were told that some areas over there were also
01:47 evacuated from this fire. Again international one mile radius that was
01:51 what folks were taken away from another able to. Return home
01:54 now no injuries to report at this time and as we
01:57 mentioned we don't know. If the thunderstorms that we've had earlier
02:00 this evening if that caused this fire that may have been
02:04 some sort of lightning strike. That's -- these oxygen tanks near
02:08 Douglas -- If that caused does that caused this sound situation
02:13 to go on we don't know that for yet TBA in
02:15 the folks over with. Russ describes him fire departments from --
02:19 from both Jefferson is your eyes. We will be doing a
02:21 formal investigation on -- so again repeating this fire appears to
02:25 be over. Folks are able to return home I don't know
02:27 to patsy -- to pinpoint over toward my right. And you
02:31 conceded the RC cars those -- residents that are now starting
02:35 to make their way. Or they're gonna be able to go.
02:41 Straight through so that's the scene here at this moment of
02:44 course this will be an ongoing story that we'll have an
02:46 update for you tomorrow morning on ten news today for now
02:48 we are lighting -- -- terror and it's.
Alexandra Martellaro, WBIR 11:35 p.m. EDT August 20, 2014
Lightning struck a line running from an oxygen tank into Douglas Lake during Wednesday evening's storms. Firefighters say the strike sparked a large fire near the dam.
Homes and campsites near the fire were evacuated for a couple hours, but residents have since been given the all-clear to return to their homes.
TVA says the liquid oxygen tanks are used for water quality in the lake. Firefighters extinguished the fire shortly after 10:30. TVA inspected the tanks to make sure they were safe and issued the all-clear to residents.
The tanks are located about a quarter-mile from the dam. TVA says they use the tanks to pump liquid oxygen into the water which increases oxygen levels in the summer.
Firefighters say the blaze did not cause any major property damage that they know of, and no one was hurt.
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