Thunder Bay gas leak cause revealed

The province's public safety regulator says a gas leak in Thunder Bay this past summer was a result of the faulty placement of locators for the buried pipe.

Safety Authority says ruptured pipe was due to inaccurate locating of underground line

Police blocked off and evacuated a neighbourhood in Thunder Bay's north end in June after city crews ruptured a gas main. (Jody Porter/CBC File)

The province's public safety regulator says a gas leak in Thunder Bay this past summer was a result of the faulty placement of locators for the buried pipe.

The Technical Standards and Safety Authority issued orders to Union Gas and the contractor G-Tel Engineering, as well as a G-Tel technician, in connection with the incident that caused the evacuation of an area around Red River Road and Hill Street.

"The orders really remind all three parties to comply with the regulations to ensure [locators] are properly marked and properly determined," said Wilson Lee, director of stakeholder relations for the TSAA.

Wilson Lee says the TSAA has no plans to prosecute Union Gas or G-Tel Engineering. (Supplied by Wilson Lee/TSAA)

The city of Thunder Bay's manager of corporate safety said the TSAA's ruling absolved the city of responsibility.

"We conducted all of the operations according to industry standards," said Leif Anderson. "Nothing that happened there was due to anything that was done by a city worker."

Lee said the investigation cost about $10,500, which was covered by G-Tel Engineering.

He said he's "confident" the orders will address the root cause of the leak, and the TSAA has no plans to prosecute either G-Tel Engineering or Union Gas.

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