Fortis BC customers could lose service after pipeline explosion

11 Octobre, 2018, 07:55 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Fortis BC customers could lose service after pipeline explosion

"The duration of the price impact will depend on the length of time that the pipeline is out of service, but it may be at least one to two weeks", McTeague said.

An evacuation order had been downgraded Wednesday to the handful of homes near the explosion site.

The electricity and gas company FortisBC is asking British Columbians to turn down their thermostats and reduce natural gas use on other appliances following Tuesday's gas line explosion near Prince George.

He said the blast sounded like a huge rumbling train or low-flying jet passing over his roof. Turn off your furnace if you can.

The Enbridge pipeline connects to the Northwest Pipeline system that feeds Puget Sound Energy in Washington state and Northwest Natural Gas in Portland.

A section of the pipeline owned by Texas-based Enbridge Inc. ruptured on Tuesday evening in the Lheidli T'enneh Nation community near Prince George, sending up massive flames that forced the evacuation of about 100 people and led to the shutdown of both oil and gas supply lines in the region.

The Enbridge website describes its almost 2,900 kilometre natural gas pipeline as capable of "transporting approximately 55 per cent of the gas produced in the province", and "the backbone of B.C.'s natural gas industry since 1957".

The explosion happened only about two kilometres from the reserve, forcing residents to quickly flee, he said.

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The effect was already being felt on Vancouver Island Wednesday.

"I could feel the heat through the windows", he said.

'We can advise the fire on the pipeline has been extinguished, the line has been isolated and fully depressurized.

"We'll also be working with the regulators of our pipeline to determine what was the cause of this event and it will be a very detailed process, they will look at the pipe itself, analyze the pipe along with any other factors", said Michael Barnes, Enbridge Spokesperson.

In an updated statement issued on Wednesday afternoon, FortisBC said there had so far been a reduction in natural gas use of about 20 per cent provincewide, but that further cuts are needed.

He said Enbridge recognizes the impact the explosion could have on customers, but the company can't speculate when the gas will start flowing again.

The Embridge pipeline ruptured in a rural area near Prince George about 5.45pm on Tuesday, the energy company said, causing natural gas to ignite.

The company will update its customers as soon as it is in a position to offer something new, said Stout.

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