Natural Gas Pipeline in California Suburb Highlights Safety Concerns Expressed by Jersey City Officials

Impact in Densely Populated Jersey City Would Be Catastrophic

JERSEY CITY Mayor Jerramiah T. Healy and other city officials today reiterated concerns about the construction of a natural gas pipeline in Jersey City following Thursday night’s devastating pipeline explosion in a suburb of San Francisco.

 “We have repeatedly expressed our concerns about Spectra Energy running a high-pressure natural gas pipeline through our city, and what happened yesterday in San Bruno brings those fears to a new level,” said Mayor Healy. “While the incident in California is still under investigation, the explosion there claimed several lives, injured many, and leveled dozens of homes. If this type of explosion were to happen in a city our size, we cannot begin to comprehend the level of devastation, destruction and loss of life. It would be catastrophic.”

 

San Bruno is a city

 

one-sixth of the size of Jersey City

, with an approximate population of 40,000 people. Jersey City has a quarter million residents, a figure that more than doubles during the weekday work hours as the city is also an employment hub.According to initial reports city officials have received, the California natural gas pipeline that erupted was a “Class IV” pipeline, the same thickness of pipe that Spectra has proposed constructing through Jersey City. The difference, however, is that the pipeline in San Bruno was 24 inches in diameter, while the Jersey City pipeline is proposed to be even larger at 30 inches.

News reports state that even more than 12 hours after the explosion, only 75 percent of the fire in San Bruno had been contained.

“We still don’t know the full extent of the devastation in California, because crews have not been able to get into some areas,” said

 

 

OEM Coordinator Greg Kierce . “But preliminary reports indicate that water mains in the area ruptured due to the explosion, severely hampering the firefighting efforts. The issues raised in this incident are ones we have been expressing for months.”

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