Beach sand used to soak up Miami Beach gas leak

08/09/2012 5:00 AM

08/09/2012 2:34 PM

An underground leak in Miami Beach sent fuel spewing into the streets and through the roof of a Chevron station Thursday morning.

Firefighters from Miami Beach and a hazmat team from Miami worked to contain and clean the spill with beach sand from the nearby oceanfront as well as biodegradable foam.

The early-morning scene at the station, 1800 Alton Rd., closed streets in the area — including part of Alton and from Dade Boulevard to 20th Street — for several hours.

More than 1,000 gallons of gas cascaded from the gas station — some from the roof pipes — and into the roadway. Some gas spilled into the sewer system, but authorities say drinking water is safe.

“The foam works to control the gas’ vapors,” said Miami Fire spokesman Ignatius Carroll. “We asked dump trucks to get sand from the nearby beach. We spread it across the streets so that it can block and absorb the gasoline.”

The cause of the leak is still unknown, but foul play has been ruled out. No one was injured.

“All units were able to get everything under control,” said Miami Beach Fire Chief Javier Otero. “All that’s left is the cleanup and the investigation.”

Authorities got the alarm at 4:51 a.m. after a Chevron clerk heard several complaints from customers saying that they smelled gasoline outside. The station remains closed.

Investigators are looking into how underground gas tank’s leak started.

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