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FortisBC asks customers to reduce gas use after pipeline rupture

FortisBC asks customers to reduce gas use after pipeline rupture

Puget Sound Energy, a US energy company, is also asking customers in Washington state to help conserve natural gas and electricity because of B.C.'s pipeline rupture and the impact it has on the USA gas supply.

A larger, 36-inch line that ruptured Tuesday remains out of service with no timeframe for fix, which is limiting the supply of natural gas in the north, southwestern B.C., and Vancouver Island.

"Our local gas system is safe and was not damaged by the pipeline failure", it said.

The Enbridge natural gas pipeline that exploded Tuesday evening is a feeder for the province-wide gas distribution system and, because of this, FortisBC says it anticipates decreased energy flow and potential loss of service. "This process will continue through the weekend and includes large, multi-family high-rises".

Fortis said October 10 the rupture may cut gas supplies to as many as 700,000 customers in Vancouver and other parts of western Canada. Its trucks in the Seattle region also run on natural gas.

"We appreciate the efforts of our customers to limit their use of natural gas at this time", said Stout. The line has been shut down and an investigation has been launched to determine the cause of the incident, the company said.




Investigators will also secure and remove the pipeline wreckage and examine the pipeline's operating history and inspections, the statement said.

Enbridge describes the 2,900-kilometre pipe as the "backbone" of the industry, carrying 60 per cent of B.C.'s total supply and about 50 per cent of the gas consumed in Washington, Oregon and Idaho.

Police have found no evidence that Tuesday's pipeline blast involved criminal wrongdoing.

There are no reports of injuries as a result of the blast and most residents have been allowed to return home.

The explosion has knocked out oil refineries in Washington state that rely on natural gas to power the facilities.

A 605-unit apartment complex is without heat or hot water, and utility provider FortisBC has reportedly ordered 200 industrial customers in Vancouver to shut off their gas. "Fortunately, there are several sunny days forecast, so this will help staff and students to remain comfortable".

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