At approximately 4:45 p.m. on Wednesday, July 14, Emanuel County 911 center reported a tanker truck carrying a potential hazardous substance overturned in the ditch at the corner of Mary Ann Street and Mable Avenue. Swainsboro fire units immediately responded, and police units were dispatched to cordon off the area and direct traffic. The material was determined to be 7,492 gallons of liquefied propane gas, classified as an extremely flammable hazardous gas. At 5:02 p.m., all full-time firefighters were called back to duty and Haz-mat team technicians from Swainsboro and Metter were activated. Team members began air monitoring of the surrounding area and determined there was a liquid leak from the safety relief valve.
Precautionary evacuation of the immediate half-mile area surrounding the location was required following Guide 115 of the DOT Emergency Response Guidebook and were carried out by police and EMS personnel. All sources of ignition, electrical, radios, cellphones were stopped to prevent the possibility of fire.
At 6:31 p.m., all power in the area was shut down by Georgia Power. Heavy wreckers were brought in to lift and right the tanker. At 7:17 p.m., the tanker was righted back on its tires. Entry team continued air monitoring and inspection of the tank. At 7:21 p.m., Georgia Power restored power back to the grid. At 7:33 p.m., the incident was declared under control and residents were allowed to return to their homes. The product was safely off-loaded to another tanker without incident.
Responding agencies involved were Swainsboro Fire and Police, Emanuel Sheriff’s Office, Emanuel EMS, Metter Fire-Rescue, Randy’s Towing of Metter and Georgia Power.
photo credit: WHITLEY CLIFTON
SCENE FROM WEDNESDAY OVERTURN