Chemical reaction fires up garage bucket

From Local Sources

SCHNELLVILLE — Units of Schnellville and St. Anthony’s volunteer fire departments responded to the report of a garage fire Wednesday night west of Schnellville.

The situation at the Josh and Valarie Lange residence turned out not to be as dire as the initial report may have suggested.

Schnellville Fire Chief Mark Fischer said Valarie Lange had returned home to see a flow and smoke when she opened the garage door. She closed the door and dialed 911.

Several firefighters arrived in less than a minute and found a plastic 5-gallon bucket burning.

Fischer said the bucket contained about 10 or more instant cold packs and some other foil-packaged products. It appears a chemical or chemicals in the cold packs leaking onto the other substance, triggering a chemical reaction that generated enough heat to ignite the plastic bucket.

Damage was limited to the bucket, its contents and a wall that was left discolored.

Firefighters quickly extinguished the fire, moved the bucket outside and ventilated the garage.

One Schnellville truck and 10 firefighters were on the scene about 40 minutes. Eight firefighters and one truck from the St. Anthony Volunteer Fire Department assisted, according to St. Anthony Fire Chief Scott Uebelhor.

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