Thursday, April 28, 2005

Gas explosions: they're not just for manholes anymore

Our occasional Washington correspondent Jean phones in with this report:
Now houses are exploding in Maryland.

Gas Leaks Identified in Pr. George's

By Nancy Trejos
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, April 23, 2005; Page B01

Washington Gas has found about 1,400 active leaks in underground service lines within a 100-square-mile area of Prince George's County, according to a report the utility sent late yesterday to the Maryland Public Service Commission.

The leaks are not considered hazardous because the vapor remains underground and has not migrated into homes or buildings, Washington Gas spokesman Tim Sargeant said after releasing the 33-page report. The company plans to repair all leaks within six months, the report said.

Washington Gas has been under scrutiny since a District Heights house exploded in March after its residents complained of a gas odor. Since then, company officials have acknowledged that they had noticed an increase in the number of leaks in the county a year and a half ago.

Good luck selling your houses over the next six months, folks! Note that the leaks are not considered hazardous because they're confined to underground--slowly accumulating and building up in concentration. (rubs chin) Hmmm, what else do we know of that operates on the same principal?


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