Firefighters in the Sacramento suburb of Lincoln, California are fighting a propane tanker fire for the second day in a raw, attempting to extinguish the blaze before it causes damage to 4,000, possibly as many as 5,000 homes.
The tanker, carrying a 29,000-gallon tank has been building up heat which firefighters worry could cause an explosion which the fire chief has compared to a “small thermal nuclear bomb” that would produce fireballs several hundred yards wide.
The fire chief also warns that the explosion could throw metal shards up to a mile away from the explosion which had led to a mandatory evacuation warning for everyone within a one-mile radius of the tanker.
Under the evacuation order 40,000 people were asked to leave their homes, while 6,000 students were missing their first days of classes.
According to some estimates the fire could blaze for upwards of 21 days, while the area fire chief has ordered his men to have it contained in 24 to 48 hours, while announcing that his men have kept the tanker within cooling guidelines since it burst into flames yesterday.
At this time the fire is under control however fire officials are asking that everyone stay away from the evacuation zone until they are given the go ahead to return home.