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Rural fire causes ammo and propane explosions

Posted: 6:19 PM, Nov 11, 2016
Updated: 2016-11-11 19:19:57-05
Firefighters from several metro-area departments fought a large fire near Valley Friday afternoon.
 
Thick black smoke could be seen for miles.
 
Fifty firefighters were in the unincorporated town of Elk City, south of highway 36, fighting a blaze that consumed several thousand square feet of property.
 
Building materials, bottles of propane and other, highly flammable materials, including live ammunition, caught fire and burned for several hours near highway 36 and 225th St., closing down a stretch of that roadway much of the day.
 
"When we got on location we found several semi-tractor trailers on fire, anywhere from six to eight of them,” said Waterloo Fire Chief Travis Harlow. “They were surrounded by a couple sheds with a whole bunch of miscellaneous building materials.”
  
Arriving firefighters were kept away from the flames because they say ammunition and bottles of propane were exploding. 
   
"Several loud explosions went off right as I was getting on location,” Harlow said. “There were two or three loud explosions." 
 
Monte Hanel was one of several people at a bar across the street who saw the blaze.
 
"Large black fire with flames shooting out of it,” Hanel said. “When I got out here it was mainly large amounts of black smoke.” 
 
Douglas County Sheriff's deputies and state troopers responded.
 
They say no one was hurt and criminal activity is not suspected.
 
The state fire marshal is investigating.
 
No word yet on cause.