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WEDNESDAY, JUNE 27, 2007
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Lightning sparks fire at gas station in Lacey's Spring

By Seth Burkett
sburkett@decaturdaily.com 340-2355

LACEY'S SPRING — Rather than soaking a dangerously dry valley community Monday, a brief thunderstorm sparked fire at a gas station pump.

Lacey's Spring Volunteer Fire Chief Terry Daniel said lightning struck the Bud's convenience store at Alabama 36 and U.S. 231 at about 10 p.m., burning out some circuitry in the pump system and setting an underground blaze.

"We got lucky that there was no actual fuel on fire. A plastic shell liner around a pump was ignited from the lightning. The fire itself was below ground, except for the flames that were coming above," Daniel said.

He said firefighters used a fire extinguisher to put out the fire because putting water on gasoline would only spread the fire.

"Our main concern was whether or not we had any fuel leakage and stuff, so we called HazMat in," Daniel said. "Fortunately, it was all in a little manhole type-area, so it was contained."

Daniel said firefighters shut the station down and evacuated it until Decatur Fire and Rescue's Hazardous Materials Team determined there was no fuel leakage. Daniel said the store voluntarily closed for the rest of the night and its fuel lines remained down Tuesday.

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