Chevron NatGas Pipe Threatened by Fire in California as 4,000 are Forced to Evacuate

Officials have closed an elementary school and evacuated more than 4,000 people after a grass fire threatened an underground natural gas pipeline in the San Francisco Bay Area.

The fire started on Wednesday in Bay Point. According to Chevron, a power line fell and sparked the fire. Chevron operates the pipeline threatened by the fire.

The company quickly cut supply to the gas line, and was working with firefighters to help evacuate the area in case the incident escalates.  

Fire officials said that an elementary school in the vicinity would be closed on Thursday in case something went wrong between the fire and the gas line.

1,400 homes were also evacuated in the area.

Evacuation centers were set up, according to officials.

Chevron indicated that the fire came close to a valve junction for their line, and immediately shut down the gas line and then sent a team to investigate the potential hazards.

Evacuations were issued at around 11pm on Wednesday, affecting a half mile radius around the fire. Officials hopes the issue would be resolved in a few hours and evacuees would be able to return home, although it is still unclear how long it will take to resolve the issue.


30 Houses Evacuated After Energy Transfer 24-Inch Pipeline Explosion

Police say a gas pipeline in Center Township exploded early Monday morning forcing close to 30 homes to be evacuated.

The explosion was on Energy Transfer Partner’s 24-inch natural gas gathering line in Beaver County, Pennsylvania. Reports suggested that the pipeline explosion occurred shortly before 5 a.m.

“It took time… to burn the gas that was remaining in the lines out,” police said.

Center Township Police Chief added that there were also some evacuees that required medical assistance because of their medical condition and not injuries sustained by the actual explosion.

Power lines and other towers fell, blocking a road, and closing an interstate in both directions.
The Central Valley School District – which includes Center and Potter townships and Monaca – closed all of its schools Monday due to the explosion.

Although no injuries were reported, several homes in the area were evacuated after the fire broke out, the company said in an emailed statement. The cause of the explosion is still unknown.

The fire was extinguished around two hours after the initial fire. later that morning, the company reported.

Biz Journal

Gas Pipeline Leak Causes Evacuation of More than 1,000 Homes in San Diego

A ruptured and leaking gas pipeline in San Diego on Wednesday caused the evacuation of more than 1,000 homes and shut down five miles of a nearby freeway for several hours.

The rupture was caused by a construction worker who accidentally drilled into the 20-inch pipeline Wednesday morning while helping with a road expansion. The incident occurred near the Fashion Valley Mall in Mission Valley, San Diego.

At least 1,100 homes and some nearby businesses near the leak were evacuated, and authorities closed a section of State Route 163.

San Diego Gas & Electric finally capped the pipeline Wednesday evening. The evacuations were lifted, and the freeway was reopened, but repairs still need to be made to the pipeline.


Magellan Midstream Fuel Pipeline Leaks 500 Barrels of Gasoline in Minnesota

Magellan Midstream Partners on Monday said it estimates a total of 500 barrels of gasoline leaked from its 12-inch pipeline system in Eagan, Minnesota.

The leak was caused by third-party excavation equipment, according to Magellan Midstream.

Several roads near the area were temporarily closed down, and some businesses in the immediate area were evacuated.

Emergency responders and regulators are on site, but Magellan said it does not yet have a definitive timeline for repairs to be complete.


Authorities Complete Clearing of Dakota Access Pipeline Protest Camp

Authorities on Thursday finished clearing a protest camp in North Dakota where protestors have gathered and camped for months to fight the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Most of the remaining few-hundred protestors left peacefully Wednesday, the deadline for their evacuation from the federally-owned land, but some defiantly stayed overnight and into Thursday, causing authorities to spend hours searching the grounds to force the remaining protestors off the land. Authorities said they arrested a total of 46 people Thursday.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers sent out a notice in early February requiring that all remaining protestors at the Oceti Sakowin camp in southern North Dakota evacuate the land by 2pm GMT on February 22. The agency as well as the state's governor said the evacuation order came amid concerns of the protestors' and the environment's safety from coming spring floods.

Some protestors continue to argue that the land is not federally owned but rather rightfully owned by American Indians under old treaties.

As authorities worked to clear the land on Thursday, cleanup crews began demolishing structures in efforts to start clearing away leftover debris and waste.

Energy Transfer Partners has restarted construction on the line and expects oil to run through the pipeline between March 6 and April 1.

Houston Chronicle

Dakota Pipeline Protestors Set Structures Ablaze Amid Camp Evacuation Deadline

Perhaps as a last act of defiance, some protestors remaining at the Dakota Access Pipeline protest camp set ablaze a few remaining structures on Wednesday, the last day protestors were given to evacuate the camp before authorities would force them to leave.

The protestors are calling it a "ceremonial act" as they set structures on fire on their last day to be at the camp before being potentially arrested for trespassing.

February 22 was the set deadline ordered by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum for remaining few-hundred protestors to evacuate the federally-owned Oceti Sakowin camp in North Dakota, where thousands of protestors have camped over the last few months to protest the Dakota Access Pipeline.

The evacuation was ordered as a way to protect the protestors from coming spring floods as well as an effort to prevent possible environmental damage that could result from eroded waste and debris left at the campsite.

Chase Iron Eyes, member of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe, said he expects protestors to stay put all the way until the 2 p.m. (GMT) deadline and subject themselves to arrests.

North Dakota officials set up a travel assistance center to help evacuate remaining protestors. Food, water, health check-ups, and one night's voucher to a nearby hotel are being accommodated to remaining protestors, as well as a bus ticket home.

According to court documents filed Tuesday, the 1,172-mile Dakota Access Pipeline will be ready for oil between March 6 and April 1.

NBC News

Army Corps, State Governor Refuse to Extend Evacuation Deadline of Dakota Access Protest Camp

Piles of debris at the Oceti Sakowin camp, the main Dakota Access Pipeline protest camp, in North Dakota.  Amy Sisk/Inside Energy

Piles of debris at the Oceti Sakowin camp, the main Dakota Access Pipeline protest camp, in North Dakota. Amy Sisk/Inside Energy

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the North Dakota state governor on Thursday said they would not extend the evacuation deadline for protestors located at a federally owned camp along the Dakota Access Pipeline route where thousands of opponents have fought the pipeline over the last several months.

After an emergency notice was put forth by both the Army Corps and North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum saying protestors must leave the camp by February 22, opponents of the line met with officials from the Army Corps requesting that the date be extended.

"It's completely impossible to remove everything down there in that short of a time frame," said member of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Chase Iron Eyes.

The evacuation was issued as a safety precaution as coming floods could potentially cause environmental pollution by displacing the leftover belongings and waste left at the campsite by past and present protestors.

Those still remaining at the campsite after February 22 could face a fine up to $5,000 and a possible six-month jail sentence.


Gasoline Pipeline Explosion in Rural Alabama Kills One, Injures Several

A still shot from CNBC video footage of the fire caused by a gasoline pipeline explosion outside of Helena, Alabama in western Shelby County on October 31, 2016 (  CNBC News  )

A still shot from CNBC video footage of the fire caused by a gasoline pipeline explosion outside of Helena, Alabama in western Shelby County on October 31, 2016 (CNBC News)

The same pipeline that experienced a gasoline leak in early September and caused a gasoline shortage throughout the Southeast exploded in western Shelby County, Alabama on Monday and has been shut down.

The explosion occurred after a worker struck the pipeline with a track hoe, which caused gasoline to ignite and explode around 3:00pm Monday, sending thick, black smoke high into the air over the rural land. One worker was killed, and several workers were injured.

The effects of the explosion were not immediately clear, although two wildfires caused by the explosion have burned at least 31 acres of land and forced individuals living nearby out of their homes. According to the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, the fire has been contained but remains burning.

“Our deepest condolences go out tonight to the family and friends of the person who was lost today, and our thoughts and prayers are with those who were injured,” pipeline owner Colonial Pipeline said in a released statement Monday.

Colonial Pipeline also said in a brief statement following the incident that health and safety of its work crews and the public are its top priorities.


Ammonia Pipeline Leak Causes Evacuation, One Death in Nebraska

A pipeline rupture that leaked 294,000 gallons of liquid anhydrous ammonia on Monday in Tekamah, Nebraska caused the evacuation of 40 people and the death of one man.

The pipeline owner, Magellan Midstream Partners, noticed a drop in pressure on the line on Monday near 9:00pm and worked to shut off valves on either side of the break. It then isolated the affected section with machinery for further measure.

When the leak occurred, the liquid anhydrous ammonia turned into a toxic gas, as it does when exposed to oxygen, and rose roughly 30 feet into the air like a misty fog.

Families in the 23 nearby homes were forced to evacuate, and one man lost his life after driving into the toxic mist and crashing his vehicle into a ditch.

Magellan stated it is working hard to return the evacuees back to their homes. An air quality test will occur in the area before people are allowed to return, according to a Magellan spokesman.

Official investigations are ongoing as the U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Administration and the National Transportation Safety Board work on an extensive report on the incident.

The eight-inch pipeline owned by Magellan Midstream Partners is one of two anhydrous pipelines in the U.S., according to a Magellan spokesman. The 1,100-mile section that runs through Nebraska was built in the 1960s. The entire line runs from Borger, Texas through Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, and Minnesota.

Lincoln Journal Star

Natural Gas Fire Prompts Evacuation in Las Vegas

natural gas fire prompts evacuation in las vegas southwest gas company natural gas pipeline

A fire from a natural gas line rupture occurred in a residential city of Las Vegas on Tuesday morning prompting evacuating of nearly 90 residents in nearby homes. No one was injured, and no homes were damaged from the fire.

Firefighters were called to the scene after a backhoe operator digging in the street accidentally hit a natural gas line, sparking an “extremely intense” fire that burned from about 11:30am to 1:30pm.

The firefighters allowed the fire to burn until the gas could be shut off, and they sprayed nearby houses with water to prevent them from catching fire.

Details of who was operating the backhoe have not been released.

Southwest Gas Company spokeswoman Sonia Headen said about 2,000 customers may be without gas service for an unspecified amount of time until the line is repaired. Once service is restored, officials with Southwest Gas will go door-to-door to relight pilot lights. 

The company is currently investigating the incident.

Las Vegas Sun


Gas Pipeline Leak in Baytown, Texas Prompts Evacuation

ExxonMobil Logo - image from Offshore Energy Today

A pipeline leak of a highly flammable chemical was reported outside of an ExxonMobil plant in Baytown, Texas on Sunday morning, prompting the evacuation of nearby residents and a shelter-in-place warning that was enforced until Sunday afternoon.

No injuries resulted from the leak that extended from the largest chemical plant and oil refinery complex in the country.

Emergency responders successfully shut down two valves to stop the leak. An ExxonMobil spokeswoman reported: “The release has been stopped and the pipeline has been safely isolated. We are preparing to safely conduct repairs on the pipeline. We appreciate the assistance of the Baytown Police and Fire Departments, who ensured a safe and effective response. We apologize for the disruption and inconvenience this caused to nearby residents."

ExxonMobil is working on identifying the cause of the leak which is currently unknown and will not restart the pipeline until it is clear to do so.

The gas released from the pipeline is propylene, a highly flammable, colorless fuel gas that is produced during the refining of gasoline. The chemical can also be used to make acetone and plastics.

Houston Chronicle

Evacuations Ordered for Mont Belvieu in Response to a Pipeline Leak

Mont Belvieu City Park via

Parts of Mont Belvieu, Texas were ordered to evacuate as a precautionary measure after reports of a leak from a pipeline storage facility and a fire from another chemical plant. No injuries were reported, and there were no concerning impacts on the surrounding environment, according to officials.

Along with a small evacuation order, parts of Texas Highway 146 were temporarily shut down and rerouted because of its close proximity to the leak and fire.

The affected pipeline is located in a Mont Belvieu storage facility owned and operated by LyondellBasell’s pipeline group in the Texas Gulf Coast region. LyondellBasell said in a statement that monitors indicated a pressure build-up in a wellhead at their pipeline storage facility, which stores light hydrocarbons. Company officials worked late into Sunday to lower the pressure of the pipeline.

The cause of the fire that erupted at the nearby Lone Star facility is unknown at the time. LyondellBasell reported that the fire did not occur on their property, and they understand investigators are working to find the cause of the fire, which may be unrelated to the pipe leak.

A Lone Star spokesperson stated that updates would be provided as information becomes available.

ABC 13