Letter to the Editor: Lifesaving Lessons with Butane

Sunday, August 11th, 2019

A couple weeks ago our big white butane tank needed filling. But before that could happen the broken gauge and float needed to be replaced. The tank guy cracked the seal on the gauge and… ssssshhhhhhhh. The big white tank still had gas in it. We were leaking the butane into the yard and neighbourhood. The gas refill company was waiting to do the fill-up and said to CALL THE FIRE DEPARTMENT. That’s Lesson One. If your gas tank is leaking, call the Fire Department (206-2372 or 911).
The Fire Department showed up in less than three minutes! A shiny new fire truck navigated our narrow streets with lights and sirens, and the crew was ready with gear on and masks. Immediately they asked for some wet rags and towels. They put the soaking wet rags over the gauge and dulled the ssssshhhhhhhh sound. They requested more wet rags and with that the leaking was stopped. Why? The butane is so cold that the wet rags ‘froze’ over the leak. That’s Lesson Two. Wet rags will temporarily stop the gas leak until the tank can be handled safely by the professionals.
Under the supervision of Fire Chief Bucknor and his crew, the tank company carried the big white tank to the company yard and in a couple of hours the gas was safely bled off, the gauge and float replaced and the big white tank was returned to its place in our yard and refilled safely. That’s Lesson Three. Leave it to the professionals.
A disaster was averted in our neighbourhood. So, Lesson Four folks. Give credit where credit is due. I wish to thank Fire Chief Bucknor and the SP Fire Department, the boss and team at E&L Butane and the fellows at LP Appliance. THANK YOU for your professionalism, for working together, and for the three main lifesaving lessons with butane.
Ever so grateful,
Dianne Lawrence (aka Quicksilver)

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