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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation P-72-041
Details
Synopsis: On March 24, 1972, in the Annandale section of Fairfax County, VA, a contractor's backhoe snagged a 2-inch steel gas main, and pulled the main out of a compression coupling 22 feet away. Gas company personnel arrived on the scene about 40 minutes later and started to search for the break. The gas was not shut off and the nearby houses were not checked for the presence of gas. A house, 240 feet away from the point at which the line was snagged, exploded. Two other houses exploded and burned. As a result of the accident, three persons died and one was injured; two houses were destroyed and a third was badly damaged; and $153,000 worth of property was damaged.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT: THE OFFICE OF PIPELINE SAFETY AMEND 49 CFR 192 TO REQUIRE THAT EACH PIPELINE OPERATOR PREPARE PREPLANNED SHUTDOWN PROCEDURES SO THAT ANY SECTION OF A HIGH-PRESSURE DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM CAN BE SHUT DOWN IN AN EMERGENCY.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Pipeline
Location: Annandale, VA, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: 80206
Accident Reports:
Washington Gas Light Company, Natural Gas Explosion
Report #: PAR-72-04
Accident Date: 3/24/1972
Issue Date: 11/22/1972
Date Closed: 9/28/1978
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: RSPA (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s):

Safety Recommendation History
From: RSPA
To: NTSB
Date: 4/3/1978
Response: 3/7/73 - DOT LTR: PARAGRAPH 192.615(A) PRESENTLY REQUIRES THAT EACH OPERATOR SHALL - HAVE WRITTEN EMERGENCY PROCEDURES. OPS IS EVALUATING THE NEED FOR FURTHER CLARIFICATION OF THAT REQUIREMENT. 7/5/73 - DOT LTR: THE OPS IS NOW ENGAGED IN A STUDY OF RAPID SHUTDOWN PROCEDURES. THIS STUDY WILL PROVIDE THE BASIS FOR AMENDED STANDARDS FOR IMPROVED SAFETY. 4/3/78 - OPSO LETTER IN RESPONSE TO NTSB 11/4/77 LETTER REQUESTING STATUS OF STUDIES INVOLVING THIS RECOMMENDATION: 49 CFR 192.615(A)(B) ANSWERS THE INTENT OF THIS RECOMMENDATION. THIS SECTION WAS ISSUED 3/31/76.

From: NTSB
To: RSPA
Date: 11/4/1977
Response: