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Squamish gas pipeline leak repaired

The incident is an important reminder to check where pipelines are before digging or conducting excavation work: FortisBC.

Repairs on a gas pipe have been completed, following a leak that cut service to 170 customers and forced residents in the Northyards area to shelter in place on Friday afternoon.

The repairs were completed on Friday evening as of 9:45 p.m. a FortisBC spokesperson told The Squamish Chief on Monday.

"We know it was third-party damage and we won't know all the details of this case until after we complete our internal investigation with Technical Safety BC and WorkSafeBC," wrote spokesperson Laura Lea in an email.

"Incidents like this are rare, especially in this area, and we appreciated the support of local first responders and our crews to ensure the safety of the public."

The utility restored service to 100 customers on Friday evening, said Lea. On Saturday, they followed up with the remaining 70 customers. All those who were home at the time had their service restored. Those who were not home when crews visited were invited to book an appointment.

Those looking to book an appointment can call 1-877-711-8877, she said.

Lea said the incident is an important reminder to check where pipelines are before digging or conducting excavation work.

"The majority of the damages to our system are preventable, so this is a good reminder to always click or call BC1Call before digging," she said. "Through this process, a map will be sent with information on the location of buried natural gas lines and other utilities. It's important to read this information carefully, mark out where the lines are and then carefully hand dig to expose the line."

On Jan. 27, residents of the Northyards were asked to shelter in place, close windows and switch off any gas appliances.

This happened after a still-undetermined third party damaged a gas main, FortisBC said.

All afternoon, District of Squamish emergency personnel were on the scene in the area of No Name Road after a reported natural gas leak resulting from excavation work in the area.

Residents in a nearby mobile home park were asked to leave their homes for their own safety, due to their proximity to the leak, according to the District.

A road closure was in place at No Name Road and Centennial Way.

"They're attending to gas main damage that was caused by a third party earlier today. So they arrived on site just after 11 a.m., and they continue to be on site," said Lea on Friday, around the time of the incident.

As of 4 p.m. on Friday, emergency crews were leaving and all road closures were over.

That afternoon, the highway was shut in both directions for a short time as crews checked gas levels.

FortisBC told The Squamish Chief that its crews remained on-site at Pioneer Street and Discovery Way on Friday evening.

In addition to local crews, workers from the North Shore were brought up to deal with the issue.

Please note that this story has been updated since it was first posted as the situation evolved.


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