Gas Service Restored After Weekend Pipeline Explosion

Natural Gas Explosion
Flames light up the sky after a natural gas explosion near Otterburne, Manitoba on Saturday, January 25, 2014. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)

All 3,600 customers in several Southern Manitoba communities affected by a natural gas pipeline explosion over the weekend will have their service restored by the end of the day, according to Manitoba Hydro.

A valve in a TransCanada pipeline near Otterburne, Manitoba exploded on January 25, forcing area residents to scramble to keep warm and Manitoba Hydro to call in staff from across the province to assist with the restoration process.

As of Wednesday at 12:30 p.m. About 95 per cent of customers had their gas service up and running, while Hydro employees were working the rest of the afternoon confirming that natural gas was back for the rest of those affected. Customers who weren’t home to receive an in-person visit from Hydro personnel were being called by support staff to check if their gas appliances were operating normally.

Now that service has been restored, Hydro says that extra staff deployments will start to wind down by the end of the day and operations should return to normal. Hydro staff will no longer be available at the TransCanada/Manitoba Hydro Customer Information Centre in Niverville by 7 p.m. tonight, so customers with issues after that time are asked to call 1-888-MB-HYDRO (624-9376).

On Monday, TransCanada said it could take between six and eight weeks to determine the cause of the explosion.