Texas: Natural Gas Pipeline Explosion Causes Minor Injuries; Homes Evacuated

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Dec 5, 2000 - 09:25 AM

Natural Gas Explosion Causes Minor Injuries; Homes Evacuated The Associated Press

MONT BELVIEU, Texas (AP) - A pipeline ruptured and released a potentially explosive cloud of natural gas, forcing evacuations of about 40 homes and the rerouting of airplane flights around the area. Several minor injuries were reported Monday night when the pipeline, owned by Channel Industries Gas Co., blew open near Houston Raceway Park. The blowout was felt and heard as far away as Baytown, more than 10 miles to the south.

There was no fire, said Baytown police Sgt. Keith Dougherty.

However, residents of the immediate area were told to evacuate and flights east of Houston were kept at least miles from the site as a precaution, said Texas Department of Public Safety spokesman Richard Vasser.

"This is just blowing natural gas into the atmosphere. And once you get the proper mix of gas and oxygen, it's an explosive mixture," he said. "Any kind of spark will ignite it."

The cause of the rupture was not yet known, Dougherty said


-- Carl Jenkins (somewherepress@aol.com), December 05, 2000

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