BELAGAVI: Timely action by the authorities concerned averted what could have been a major disaster when a fire broke out at an oil depot at Desur village in Belagavi taluk on Saturday. About 1.5 lakh litres of petrol burnt in the incident.
The fire broke out at around 7.30 am in two train wagons, each with a capacity of 75,000 litres. Two trains were halted parallel to each other and each had 25 wagons filled with petrol. Sources said the fire broke out when a wagon was being unloaded.
The fire brigade personnel doused the fire before it could ignite a third wagon. However, the heat melted the railway tracks.
An oil depot official said that had the fire not been doused, the explosion would have affected villages that are within a radius of 10 to 15 km from the site of the incident.
The two damaged wagons belonged to Bharat Petroleum. As the depot will remain closed for a few days, there are chances that Belagavi may witness a shortage of fuel.
In such a case fuel may be supplied from Hubballi or Miraj in Maharashtra.
Meanwhile, Channamma Express from Bengaluru city to Kolhapur was near the depot at the time of the explosion.
Alarmed, the operators halted the train 2 km away from the depot.