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Comments on news posted 2013-02-21 09:34:05: A fiber digging crew clipped a gas line in Kansas City resulting in at least one death and fifteen injuries as the resulting explosion destroyed a restaurant and part of a shopping complex. ..


Transmaster
Don't Blame Me I Voted For Bill and Opus

join:2001-06-20
Cheyenne, WY
Reviews:
·CenturyLink

Sad

According to KFI the City sent inspectors to the restaurant when the smell of natural gas was called in but they failed to evacuate the place shortly before the explosion. Not good
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Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
Reviews:
·Optimum Online

Re: Sad

quote:
It almost smelled like the radiators were seeping out gas," one witness said. "Strong enough for us to call the landlord to say something was wrong."
Strong enough to call the landlord, but not smart enough to get out, apparently.
Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1

Re: Sad

it is interesting nobody exited. I have always been told if you smell lots of gas to exit the building and call 911 once clear of the structure.
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[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Re: Sad

That falls well within common sense!
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
And according to the NY Times, they smelled gas ALL DAY and didn't evacuate the building??? WTF? Do these people have no common sense? The first thing you do if you smell gas is GTFO and call the fire department.
patcat88

join:2002-04-05
Jamaica, NY
kudos:1

»www.youtube.com/watch?v=JzdnUZReoLM
the casting molds are getting worn out because of so many darwins award being awarded

disconnected

@snet.net
I've been arguing for two decades now that gas is too dangerous to deploy anywhere but in industrial areas. I recommend a 1 mile buffer zone between gas-using industrials and residential zones.

Look at what recently happened in Indiana, when that divorced couple blew up their home by disabling a regulator valve and detonating the gas with a timer-equipped microwave oven. Destroyed 81 homes, 31 of them so badly they had to be completely demolished. Gas is just too dangerous. Do you want your neighbors to have bomb factories? Having gas service is potentially the same thing.

Couple years back, a natural gas fired power plant was in the startup phases in Middletown, CT. They had a massive explosion. Fortunately, the plant was isolated from residential areas, but I shudder to think if it had been in a community. Never forget Durham Woods in Edison, NJ. 500 unit apartment complex destroyed in seconds due to 36" gas main failure.
Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
Reviews:
·Optimum Online

Re: Sad

Wow, I didn't even hear about the intentional explosion in Indiana.
»www.nytimes.com/2013/01/04/us/in···tml?_r=0
Kalphiter

join:2012-06-28
Metuchen, NJ
I witnessed the Durham Woods fire from my mother's womb
Bob4
Account deleted

join:2012-07-22
New Jersey
Reviews:
·Optimum Online

Re: Sad

Building next to where I used to live had a propane-fueled fire that melted the siding on my building. Ten 100 pound propane tanks exploded.

I think people should have gone to jail for illegally storing propane tanks, but the investigation was handled by the corrupt Nicholas Bissell and whitewashed.
Crookshanks

join:2008-02-04
Binghamton, NY

1 edit
said by disconnected :

I've been arguing for two decades now that gas is too dangerous to deploy anywhere but in industrial areas. I recommend a 1 mile buffer zone between gas-using industrials and residential zones.

Are you serious? Hundreds of millions of residential customers use natural gas every single day without issue. Stop spreading FUD. What alternative would you purpose for space heating? Electric and fuel oil are nearly three times as expensive, on a BTU for BTU basis:

1 therm (100,000 btu) of natural gas: $0.80 to $1.20, depending on utility and market prices
29.31 kWh (100,000 btu) of electric: $2.34 (@ $0.08/kWh) to $3.51 (@ $0.12/kWh)
0.72 gallons fuel oil (100,000 btu): $2.88 (at $4/gal)

David
hours are m-th 1130-10p central
Premium,VIP
join:2002-05-30
Granite City, IL
kudos:98

Re: Sad

I wonder how hard it would be to power an entire house on a natural gas generator...

You would think NG cars would take off considering that 1 therm would be cheaper than 1Gal of US fuel.
Crookshanks

join:2008-02-04
Binghamton, NY

Re: Sad

Wouldn't save you any money, the thermal efficiency of a small generator is not very good.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH

Re: Sad

Exactly. It's for backup use only, and it's pricey to run those things during extended outages, as piston engines are usually 20% efficient at best.
BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
Yup. It's just a matter of using it safely. More electric would mean more fires from wiring, etc, etc.

Electric is 3x the price of gas, as gas is usually like 85-90% efficient, while electric is 100% efficient at converting electricity that was made around 35% efficiently, often with gas, with 10% losses in the lines.

ev

@clearwire-wmx.net

:(

Couple of years ago, one of TWC's glorious subcontractors was out back, trench digging for a new line run. Didn't bother to have the gas lines properly marked. Problem, you'd think? Nah... only came within 6 inches. How do I know for sure? Gas Co's orange dashes were down the very next day.

Following the orange paint and fresh dirt, one could easily tell the guy actually zig-zagged close to the gas line two or three times.

gar187er
I do this for a living

join:2006-06-24
Dover, DE
kudos:4

Re: :(

gas lines arent painted orange. they are yellow.

orange is for telecom lines.
--
I'm better than you!

ev

@clearwire-wmx.net

Re: :(

Yep, misremembered the paint color. My bad!

The machine operator himself definitely wasn't around on day two. Only know that from someone on-site the day after. They explained he was "lucky to be alive..." and whatnot.

Maybe the dig supervisor assumed the lines had been marked ahead of time (IOW, no paint/flags, no gas lines). Maybe dispatch told them, "yep, marks are complete, go ahead and dig" when it hadn't even happened yet. Or they maybe they failed to check altogether. I'll never know.

Judging from the hush-hush way one TWC rep handled it, blame could be assigned to just one dude, or possibly a dozen.

Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23
No, it's not. I've seen fiber optic cable being buried that was yellow, and I've seen pictures of black cable in use too. There doesn't appear to be any colour standard that is actually followed, or if there is, the colour standard varies from place to place.
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org

Killa200
Premium
join:2005-12-02
Southeast TN

Re: :(

We are talking the color of the call to dig markers, not the cable itself.

cpsycho

join:2008-06-03
HarperLand

OMG

"We should not be upgrading to fiber it kills people. Think of the children."

Next step in Incumbents plans to not do upgrades.

Thane_Bitter
Inquire within
Premium
join:2005-01-20
Reviews:
·Bell Sympatico

1 recommendation

Re: OMG

No doubt the astroturf lot will emerge with something like "too much fibre causes deadly gas".

The contractor may be negligent, the gas line may not have been installed originally years ago in the correct position, the marking company might have made an error in marking the position of the pipe, the odour of gas was detected at the bar before the evacuation and explosion. So many possibilities, but the certainty is that this will become yet another lawsuit.

FFH
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

Plenty of blame to go around

The subcontractor for breaching the gas line.
The gas comany for taking so long to notify others of leak.
The police for not enforcing everyone leave the restaurant when gas detected.
And of course, restaurant mgt for allowing employees to remain in restaurant.
The law suit by the dead victims family and the other injured will have plenty of people to sue.
--
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gar187er
I do this for a living

join:2006-06-24
Dover, DE
kudos:4

depth

I would like to know how shallow that gas line was.
--
I'm better than you!
mrjoshuaw

join:2001-12-27
Blue Springs, MO

Re: depth

Also how deep they were trying to put the conduit in for the fiber. I don't know if they were trying to bore under the street or what.
Chubbysumo

join:2009-12-01
Superior, WI
Reviews:
·Charter

Re: depth

if its like typical places that get cold and snow, it has to be below the frost line(all utils and pipes do), which is usually 6-8 feet down, but the broadband lines can usually get away with 3-4 feet down, so what were they doing digging that deep? I am betting that an investigation will reveal all sorts of negligent parties for not following the correct procedure. The should have been no where near those gas lines in the first place, and when they found them, they should have shut down everything, called in a line marker, and investigated for leaks in the area immediately. There were lots of things that should have been done that were simply not done. The subcontracter will be liable for all damages tho, because they are the originators of the entire issue. The city could be included, and maybe the restaurant that did not evacuate staff and customers(at least for their injuries only, no more pain and suffering bullshit). I hope that the process for the victims is made easy, and they choose not to go class action. class action lawsuits have lost their purpose. Bury the subcontractor in small to large claims.
mrjoshuaw

join:2001-12-27
Blue Springs, MO

Re: depth

I agree, even if they were boring they would be able to control their depth on the paddle head, so if they were that deep then who knows why. I would think that they would have hit it as the gas line was coming up to provide service, but then in that area you should definitely not be using non-hand equipment.
Random_H3ro

join:2012-12-21
Ottawa, IL

Should of known :(

Smell gas get the heck outta there!!!!!!!!
mrjoshuaw

join:2001-12-27
Blue Springs, MO

This happened quite a bit in Overland Park Area

When the contractors ran the lines for Everest/SureWest they were hitting gas lines a lot. Quite frequently you would be driving down College Blvd outside of a few large Corporate Campuses and see them on the side of the road and with the windows rolled up you could smell the gas.

A lot of times when the locators come out and they mark where everything is you then realize what little space you have to work with. Especially since depending on some locates it could vary 3-6 inches left to right on the type of utility and how dry the ground is, the drier the ground the more the signal seeps.

This does not alleviate the accident or the responsibility, but if the plans aren't right (as in the case in Overland Park which had mis-marked their gas lines on their own maps) or the area is so congested the contractors can have a pain in the ass trying to do what they were told to do. Unfortunately not everyone would turn to the people that are hiring them and say that they are not comfortable with the way the layout is and they should think of moving the line at a more expensive cost.

And I would definitely agree...smell gas, get the heck out of dodge.
mrjoshuaw

join:2001-12-27
Blue Springs, MO

Re: This happened quite a bit in Overland Park Area

Just checked their website, it has been taken offline as well. Or it is getting hit so hard it just isn't coming up.
jvanbrecht

join:2007-01-08
Bowie, MD
My understanding is that if you are digging within the region of a gas line, you have to dig by hand. This is obvious for residential, not sure how it works in a concrete/road/paved area where you do not have a choice but to use heavy equipment (I consider a jack hammer heavy equipment).
mrjoshuaw

join:2001-12-27
Blue Springs, MO

Re: This happened quite a bit in Overland Park Area

Not to my knowledge, we used a vibrating plow, but normally the gas line is a heck of a lot deeper then the 8-12 inches that we would put the conduit in for residential locations. But then again we didn't do that around where the gas line came up on the house. But if we were crossing ANY utilities we always hand dug (pot holed) the conduit in at that point.
cooldude9919

join:2000-05-29
kudos:5

Re: This happened quite a bit in Overland Park Area

said by mrjoshuaw:

Not to my knowledge, we used a vibrating plow, but normally the gas line is a heck of a lot deeper then the 8-12 inches that we would put the conduit in for residential locations. But then again we didn't do that around where the gas line came up on the house. But if we were crossing ANY utilities we always hand dug (pot holed) the conduit in at that point.

Around here with Ameren if you are even working near a high pressure gas line, you have to call them ahead of time so they can have a response crew on standby.

insomniac84

join:2002-01-03
Schererville, IN
That just means they hit the lines because they were rushing.

They should have carefully dug by hand if they were that close to a gas line. But that of course would have cost more money.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY

blazing fast

most major metro areas have clear maps in town halls where gas lines are laid, and the contractors who didn't do the due dilligance should be fined. if the maps were not clearly marked, this is a chance to get updated... so fiber can move forward.

Ohstop

@optonline.net

This could be any utility line

This could happen with any sort of utility. Coaxial cable, twisted pair copper, heck even additional GAS LINES could cause an explosion if the company doing the digging doesn't get a proper mark out done before digging. This could also easily apply to people planting new trees or bushed, towns installing new curbs or sidewalks, even pothole repair.
tmc8080

join:2004-04-24
Brooklyn, NY
Reviews:
·ooma
·Optimum Online
·Verizon FiOS

Re: This could be any utility line

said by Ohstop :

This could happen with any sort of utility. Coaxial cable, twisted pair copper, heck even additional GAS LINES could cause an explosion if the company doing the digging doesn't get a proper mark out done before digging. This could also easily apply to people planting new trees or bushed, towns installing new curbs or sidewalks, even pothole repair.

This is a problem waiting for a techology solution... anything from microchips to radioactivty markers/tracers to create a process of detection and mapping for gas lines. Over 40 years of laying gas lines and nobody's figured it out yet..

insomniac84

join:2002-01-03
Schererville, IN

Time Warner Cable causes massive gas explosion. FTFY.

Heartland Midwest has been their contractor for over 8 years. Mentioning their name is meaningless, they were working for time warner cable. Time warner cable was putting in the fiber line and they fucked up.

•••

cork1958
Cork
Premium
join:2000-02-26

Have you noticed?

Have you noticed how much more often we are hearing of this kind of "accident" ?

The pipes and lines and everything else that are all buried are getting so old, it's a time bomb just laying there.

No such thing as preventive maintenance on this stuff, or what? Yeah, I know they have monitoring systems etc., but still, how often has that been ineffective already? I can think of 2 times fairly local to me on the Kalamazoo River.
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