Enbridge pipeline explosion forces evacuations near Prince George
Published Tuesday, October 9, 2018 6:58PM PDT
Last Updated Wednesday, October 10, 2018 10:14AM PDT
Several homes were evacuated after a pipeline ruptured and caused a large fire near Prince George, B.C. Tuesday.
The incident occurred at around 5:30 p.m. near Landooz Road in the rural community of Shelley, located about 20 kilometres northeast of Prince George.
"It sounded like a jet engine. We thought it might have been a train crash because there are two train tracks on each side of the river, but then we looked out back and it was this massive ball of fire," Regional Chief Terry Teegee of the nearby Takla Lake First Nation told CTV News.
"We were a bit worried when it first happened. We were all outside and wondering what to do."
According to the Prince George RCMP, homes within several kilometres of the scene were evacuated as a precaution. By Tuesday night, however, the evacuation zone had been reduced to a kilometre and residents were able to return home.
The province's Ministry of Environment later confirmed the incident involved a 900 PSI gas line operated by Enbridge.
Police said the gas line has since been shut down.
Enbridge spokesperson Michael Barnes told The Canadian Press company crews were working to assess the situation Tuesday night.
The RCMP has confirmed the explosion involved a pipeline, but have provided few details about what caused the rupture, which remains under investigation.
Social media images from nearby show flames and a large plume of smoke rising from the scene.
There have been no reports of injuries and the damage was limited to the pipeline itself, Mounties said.
With files from The Canadian Press