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Columbia Gas of West Virginia, Inc., Charleston, West Virginia, December 2, 1973

Author: National Transportation Safety Board. Bureau of Surface Transportation Safety.
Publisher: Washington, DC : The Bureau, August 21, 1974.
Series: Pipeline accident report.
Edition/Format:   Book : National government publication : English
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
At 3:30 p.m., on December 2, 1973, an explosion followed by an intense fire killed three persons, injured two others, and destroyed a house on the outskirts of Charleston, W. VA. Fire, fueled by natural gas which had saturated the soil, later rekindled briefly in the ground around the house. After the accident, two pit-hole leaks were found in the 2-inch gas main, operated at 39 p.s.i.g., which served the area; the
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Details

Title: Columbia Gas of West Virginia, Inc., Charleston, West Virginia, December 2, 1973
Database Name: WorldCat
All Authors / Contributors: National Transportation Safety Board. Bureau of Surface Transportation Safety.
Notes: Misc. No.: NTSB-PAR-74-4
Accession No.: 70724
NTIS:
Description: 34 p.
Year: August 21, 1974.
Publisher: Washington, DC : The Bureau,
Corporate Author: National Transportation Safety Board. Bureau of Surface Transportation Safety.
Series: Pipeline accident report; Variation: Pipeline accident report.
OCLC No.: 690762578

Abstract:

At 3:30 p.m., on December 2, 1973, an explosion followed by an intense fire killed three persons, injured two others, and destroyed a house on the outskirts of Charleston, W. VA. Fire, fueled by natural gas which had saturated the soil, later rekindled briefly in the ground around the house. After the accident, two pit-hole leaks were found in the 2-inch gas main, operated at 39 p.s.i.g., which served the area; the leaks were 11 feet from the house and 1 foot from the concrete driveway which led to the house. Gas company personnel later repaired both leaks without shutting off the main gas line or interrupting service to any other customers. The National Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of the explosion and fire was the ignition, by an unknown source, of an accumulation of natural gas which had leaked from two corrosion holes in a nearby 2-inch gas main.

Contributing to the intensity of the ensuing fire was the large amount of natural gas which had accumulated in the attic and between the original exterior walls of the house and a newer exterior brick veneer. Contributing to the accident was the fact that none of the victims reported previously detected gas odors to the gas company or to the fire department. The report contains recommendations to the Office of Pipeline Safety, the ASME Gas Piping Standards Committee, and Columbia Gas of West Virginia, Inc., intended to prevent a recurrence of an accident of this type.
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