Part of 131st Avenue closed as crews battle propane leak at Tampa's Haley VA

TAMPA — Firefighters and gas company officials worked through the night to contain a propane leak at the James A. Haley VA Medical Center, which prompted officials to shut down a portion of 131st Avenue on Thursday afternoon.

The portion of road between Livingston Avenue and 23rd Street could be closed until 4 p.m. Friday, fire officials said.

Hospital patients and area residents had not been evacuated, as the leak posed no "immediate danger," according to Hillsborough County Fire Rescue. But officials warned people should stay clear of the area until the leak, which began around 3:30 p.m. Thursday, was contained.

Officials determined the leak to be from a rusted vent on top of the tank that could no longer contain the petroleum.

Eight HART bus routes were rerouted to avoid driving up E 131st Avenue between N 22nd Street and Bruce B. Downs Boulevard on Thursday, said Frank Wyszynski, a spokesman for Hillsborough Area Regional Transit. The buses continued to avoid the area Friday.

About 10 percent of oil remained by around noon Friday, firefighters said. Crews continued to burn off vapors from the 18,000-gallon underground tank at the hospital, located at 13000 Bruce B. Downs Blvd.

Part of 131st Avenue closed as crews battle propane leak at Tampa's Haley VA 08/12/11 [Last modified: Friday, August 12, 2011 1:21pm]

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