We have serious safety issues in our neighborhood

There is a three-sided enclosure with the prevailing winds blowing into the open end. It contains a 1,000-gallon propane tank, which is a significant hazard if it leaks. That is likely to happen during a magnitude 8-plus earthquake. There is no code to secure them. They are top heavy sitting on top the ground. Their safety devices are prone to failure when out of position.

Propane, a petroleum product, is heavier than air collecting in low areas and where dissipation is blocked by barriers. Natural gas is much safer as it dissipates into the atmosphere.

Last month a fireman was killed in Farmington, Maine, investigating a propane leak. In 1999, three boys were killed in Bellingham because the fumes from a pipeline leak collected in a creek bed. The city of Auburn says this is not a code violation. The site was modified creating the trap the year after the initial tank approval. That should require a new permit and evaluation.

The characteristics of petroleum have been well known for well over a century. It responds predictably in most circumstances. The facts I have presented are easily verified, they are not merely my opinions. South King Fire & Rescue is our emergency response team under mutual aid. When I brought this to their attention, Gordon Goodsell, deputy chief and fire marshal, thanked me for my concern for the safety of their personnel and installed a dispatch alert on the address warn them en route.

Emergency responders are advised to stay 150 yards away from the tank in an emergency. There are 19 homes, approximately 50 people, including 17 children, residing in that radius. The preferred emergency evacuation radius is over one-half mile.

The fix is so simple. Move the tank about 75 feet to where the leak will dissipate downhill. Everybody will be safe.

Are you willing to take this issue to the mayor and council for correction?

– Bob Zimmerman

More in Letters to the Editor

Appreciate the support, acceptance of my service dog

Appreciate the support, acceptance of my service dog I would like to… Continue reading

Post Office delivers great service

I would like to comment on the excellent service provided by our… Continue reading

By George, he was right

To anyone closely following the congressional impeachment fiasco, one point clearly stands… Continue reading

We need to change the course

The Neanderthals were a communal and peaceful people. They would have most… Continue reading

Think before you welcome home a puppy

Don’t buy holiday puppy until you do your research. With the holidays… Continue reading

We need to support the fight against diseases

The recent tuberculosis exposure in Auburn reminds us that this disease is… Continue reading

Trial was about drug trade

Regarding Irma Fritz’s column, “Experience as juror tugs at heart of a… Continue reading

Thank you for the opportunity to serve

I want to thank everyone who voted in this election, I feel… Continue reading

Will the courts supplant the vote?

I read with interest the commentary by Jerry Cornfield in the Nov.… Continue reading

Warren showing the way for veterans

I served as a nurse in the Army during the Vietnam era.… Continue reading

Thanks to those who make an impact

We haven’t heard this much lately, but Auburn is truly more that… Continue reading

Love is ageless: adopt a pet today

Save a life and make your own better by giving an older… Continue reading