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Garbage trucks destroyed in explosive blaze

Published: Oct. 26, 2014 at 6:08 PM CDT|Updated: Nov. 23, 2014 at 7:08 PM CST
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A Sunday afternoon fire started at one garbage truck, but soon spread. (Source: Jeff S.)
A Sunday afternoon fire started at one garbage truck, but soon spread. (Source: Jeff S.)
Three trucks at the Johnson Road fleet management building caught fire Sunday morning. (Source:...
Three trucks at the Johnson Road fleet management building caught fire Sunday morning. (Source: WAFF)

HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - Huntsville Fire and Rescue was called to the scene of a fire at Johnson Road around 11 a.m. Sunday. The site is used to store the city's garbage trucks.

When crews arrived on the scene, three garbage trucks were on fire. The fire initially started with one truck that had been sitting in the lot since Thursday, and spread to the trucks on either side.

Several people in the area told us they heard multiple loud explosions. Fire officials said they were likely due to the trucks' tires exploding in the extreme heat.

Diesel fuel was involved in the fire, and firefighters had to use foam as well as water to put out the flames.

The blaze was extinguished in under an hour, according to fire officials, leaving behind the charred, unusable remains of three trucks.

"We had diesel fuel burning, a lot of oil, hydraulic fluid," said Chief Randy Green. "We were having a difficult time getting the engines out, so we ended up using foam on it."

Officials said that some of the diesel leaked into the sewer system. Hazmat crews went into the sewer with bales of hay in an effort to soak up all the diesel.

An investigation is ongoing. Among the investigators' questions will be how the fire started, as the trucks were all behind a locked gate.

Trash service is not expected to be impacted due to the loss of the three trucks.

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