Investigators checking leak on TransCanada sweet natural gas pipeline in Alberta

Investigators are looking at a breach of a TransCanada sweet natural gas pipeline in north of Medicine Hat. Google Maps

MEDICINE HAT, Alta. – Investigators are checking a breach of a TransCanada Corp. sweet natural gas pipeline in southern Alberta.

National Energy Board spokesman Darin Barter said the gas has been shut off and no one was hurt.

“The release is over. There is no public safety impacts. There is really no environmental impacts,” he said Tuesday.

TransCanada said the leak on a section of a branch line was detected Monday at around 10:42 p.m. in a rural area near the South Saskatchewan River – about 15 kilometres north of Medicine Hat.

The company said the nearest home is more than four kilometres away.

“TransCanada’s gas control centre detected a reduction in natural gas pressure on its Suffield Lateral line,” the company said in a statement.

“This section of 12-inch natural gas pipeline has been safely shut-in and the company’s emergency response procedures have been activated.”

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Details about the cause of the leak and how much gas was vented were not immediately available, but a spokesperson said gas detection equipment confirms conditions for TransCanada responders remain safe.

“Shippers are currently unable to bring natural gas onto the NGTL system at six receipt points,” said TransCanada spokesperson Davis Sheremata in an email just after 1 p.m. “However, other pipeline operations continue to operate as normal and we continue to meet delivery requirements in the area.”

TransCanada, the NEB and the Transportation Safety Board are investigating.

Sweet natural gas, also known as methane, does not contain significant amounts of hydrogen sulphide found in sour gas, which is toxic to people.

With files from Global News

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