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Gasoline tanker truck bursts into flames north of Boston, ignites homes, cars

DEc 5, 2007 - EVERETT, Mass. - A tanker truck carrying 34,000 litres of gasoline overturned on a traffic circle outside Boston early this morning, erupting into flames and setting fire to at least two houses and dozens of cars.

December 11, 2007
By THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

EVERETT, Mass. –
A tanker truck carrying 34,000 litres of gasoline overturned on a
traffic circle outside Boston early this morning, erupting into flames
and setting fire to at least two houses and dozens of cars.

There are no reports of serious injuries.

However,
local residents, including a number of elderly people, were evacuated
and a nearby armoury has been turned into a shelter.

A fire official said as many as 40 cars caught fire after the accident.

It happened at about 1:45 a.m. in Everett, Massachusetts, at the traffic circle connecting Routes 16 and 99 north of Boston.

The tanker was destroyed in the fire, but the driver was able to escape.

Chris Barrow said he was asleep in his house when he heard a “big bang.'' He went outside to scene of chaos.

“Everybody
was running because it looked like the fire was going to keep coming
down the street at us, so we were just trying to get as far away as
possible,'' Barrow told WBZ-AM.

“I jumped into my car and
started backing up, not knowing that the fire was spreading all the way
around us and behind us and I had to drive over the fire,'' he said.

Barrow said he then realized that his own vehicle was burning.

“We got out of the car and ran and it exploded about two minutes after,'' he said.

A fire official told reporters that 30 or 40 cars caught fire after the accident.

Among those evacuated were dozens of residents of an elderly housing complex that was threatened, but did not burn.

“They
did a tremendous job keeping the fire out of that apartment building,''
Everett Fire Chief David Butler told The Boston Globe. “It could have
been much worse.''