Pipeline Explodes
By Raquel Dixon

6 August 2002

Putnam County, WV, Aug. 6

Flames as high as a thousand feet spewed out of a thirty inch gas line. The fire lit up the sky as if it were daybreak. It sounded like a plane was flying overhead. Firefighters said it was unlike anything they've ever seen.

"The heat was so intense you were two hundred yards away you could actually feel the heat, it was in excess of a couple thousand degrees, it was melting the road, melting signs, burning the tree tops out over a hundred yards away."

Right here is where the line exploded as you can see, it threw up a bunch of rocks, these are scattered all throughout the area, where we're standing right now actually used ot be a street where these people would travel to and from their homes.

"I thought it was a meteor cuz I was back in the back room, and you could hear the whole house just shake." "We were asleep and this terrific noise came out and we thought it was a tornado, I looked out the window and said well it's daylight outside." "I looked out the window and thought what in the world, but I noticed it wasn't going away, so my second thought was a plane had crashed."

Firefighters forced people to evacuate until it was safe to return home. Dozens of firefighters, EMTS and police responded in case they had to rescue people. Coordinating the effort took a lot of work. "I have no qualms, about saying I'm tickled to death, to be a part of the emergency response, and the guys really put out an effort with or without me."

Putting out these flames was impossible, until the gas company workers turned off the gas.

Copyright WSAZ
Original Story

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