WATERVILLE — Crews were able to contain a large fire at a propane filling station early Friday morning in a blaze that ignited tall flames visible for several miles.

The fire, reported at 5:15 a.m. at the Dead River Shell Station at 500 Kennedy Memorial Drive in Waterville, drew crews from the Waterville and Oakland departments, according to a news release by Waterville Fire Chief Shawn Esler.

No one was injured by the fire, which Esler said was caused when a plow tractor mistakenly struck a fuel fill hose, pulling it from the pump station and causing propane to leak from the line. Officials believe damaged electrical wires then ignited the leaking propane, sparking the fire.

Firefighters arrived to find the flames were coming from a large 1,250-gallon propane tank. Crews used large diameter hoses on the blaze, requiring the temporary closure of that section of Kennedy Memorial Drive.

“Fire units established two sources of water and kept the tank cool preventing a possible rupture,” Esler wrote in the release. “It is common to allow propane (a clean fuel) to burn off preventing the gas from accumulating at ground level. Dead River technicians arrived on scene and assisted fire crews with shutting of the propane supply from the tank.”

Crews remained on scene for more than an hour after the propane supply was shut off, according to Esler, and the cause was deemed accidental.

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