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Fire shuts down Beltline Highway Friday morning

A propane tank exploded as firefighters arrived.

Posted: Jul 30, 2021 12:19 PM

EUGENE, Ore. – A fire in a homeless camp shut down a section of Beltline Highway for about 30 minutes Friday morning.

The fire started about 5 a.m. near railroad tracks south of Roosevelt Boulevard under Beltline Highway.

Battalion Chief Mike Caven of Eugene-Springfield Fire said that according to witnesses, it appeared that the man who lived in the camp set the fire and then ran away. His camp was destroyed, but nothing else burned and there were no injuries, Caven said.

Beltline Highway was shut down between Roosevelt Boulevard and West 11th Avenue so firefighters could fight the fire safely.

“Cars were trying to get around the fire trucks on Beltline, making it hazardous for the firefighters, so they shut it down,” Caven said.

The fire was contained to the tent and camping materials under the bridge, which were destroyed. A propane tank exploded as firefighters arrived.

Firefighters learned the man’s name and turned it over to the Eugene Police Department, Caven said. Police said no one has been arrested in connection with the fire.

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