Pipeline explosion near Prince George

Pipeline explosion near Prince George

Pipeline explosion near Prince George

Puget Sound Energy, a USA 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 US gas supply.

Michelle Mungall, Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, said the National Energy Board is investigating the fire.

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.

"A cause will be determined following an investigation of the incident", Barnes said.

The spike could last one to two weeks, but it depends on how long the pipeline is out of service.

A statement from Enbridge issued on Wednesday afternoon said the fire had been extinguished and the company were working with the First Nations tribe to ensure there was no further disruption to their lives.

"Anyone using natural gas for other purposes, such as research, is asked to take steps immediately to stop that use", UBC said. "Tomorrow we should have a better picture of what the gas demands will be like and what the usage allowances are".

Avista, the utility that supplies natural gas to much of southern and eastern OR, eastern Washington and Idaho, has asked its customers in southern OR to conserve gas to cope with the sudden shortage.

"At this time we can not speculate about how long it will take to resolve the situation", Enbridge spokesman Michael Barnes said in an emailed statement.

About 100 people have been evacuated from the nearby Lheidli T'enneh First Nation as a precaution. "I thought it might have been a jet engine or a low-flying jet. I just made a decision to get out".

Gas flow will be restored when the line has been tested and pressurized.

About 700,000 customers in B.C. are affected by the shortage.

"We need to understand what happened here and how we can make sure it doesn't happen again", she said.

Excess gas in the Okanagan and southeastern B.C. will be routed to the Lower Mainland, Stout said.

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

At the Fortis LNG plant, natural gas is cooled until it condenses into a liquid at about 1/600th of its usual volume.

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

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