GAO releases gas pipeline safety report in wake of Sissonville e - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

GAO releases gas pipeline safety report in wake of Sissonville explosion

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A congressional watchdog agency says federal regulators must improve the data collected on how quickly natural gas transmission pipeline operators respond to accidents.

The U.S. Government Accountability Office issued the report on Wednesday. The GAO says data currently collected by the Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration doesn't require operators to fill out certain time-related fields.

The report comes a month after a 20-inch line owned by NiSource subsidiary Columbia Gas Transmission ruptured in West Virginia, triggering a massive fire. The Dec. 11 inferno destroyed four homes and charred a section of Interstate 77. No one was seriously injured.

Federal investigators say it took Columbia Gas Transmission more than an hour to manually shut off the gas that fueled the fire.

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