What started out as a garage fire quickly became a huge explosion when the fire reached a 100 pound propane tank that the owner was storing in the garage.

We're in that time of year when more people are using their propane tanks for a variety of reasons like grilling, patio heaters, pool heaters, etc. While it's okay to keep your charcoal for the grill in your garage, the same isn't true for propane tanks.

AmeriGas.com on propane storage:

NEVER store or place a propane cylinder indoors or in an enclosed area such as a basement, garage, shed, or tent. It is illegal and highly unsafe to store propane tanks indoors.


Using a cylinder indoors is not only illegal, it is terribly unsafe. Keep in mind that a full propane barbeque cylinder contains enough liquid to produce over 300 cubic feet of vapor. A fuel source such as that should not only be stored outdoors, it should never be used indoors.

I think we all get the idea. Propane tanks can be used safely and effectively for all sorts of things, but storage of them has to be done correctly. Propane tanks should always be stored outdoors, in well-ventilated areas. Storing propane tanks in garages or sheds is a bad idea because if a tank's valve isn't fully closed, vapors could escape and concentrate indoors. FerrellGas.com recommends a flat, level outdoor area that is out of direct sunlight.

Storing one or more propane tanks inside is trouble for another reason. If a fire breaks out, things get exponentially worse when that fire reaches the propane. A Michigan family that luckily got out of their burning home before a propane explosion knows that now.

Take a look at what goes down here as a firefighter approaches the burning home in Plainfield Township, Michigan:

The firefighter wasn't injured in the blast, and the family that lives in the house were able to make it to safety, thanks to a newspaper delivery person who alerted them to the fire.

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