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Planet Ark World Environment News El Paso Pipeline Ruptures West Of Houston

Date: 10-Dec-10
Country: USA
Author: Erwin Seba, Eileen O'Grady, Kristen Hays and Bruce Nichols

A Tennessee Gas interstate natural gas pipeline ruptured near East Bernard, Texas, about 50 miles west of Houston on Wednesday afternoon, officials said.

Robert Newberry, spokesman for El Paso Corp, which owns Tennessee Gas Pipeline, said crews were on site to close a valve to stop gas leaking from the ruptured 24-inch pipeline.

"There was no fire and no injuries," Newberry said.

Tennessee Gas Pipeline is a major transporter of gas from Texas, Louisiana and the Gulf of Mexico to Chicago, New York and Boston.

The ruptured line is one of three at a compressor station, Newberry said.

Andy Kirkland, emergency management coordinator for Wharton County, said two nearby homes were evacuated as a precaution.

"It looks like the pipeline just blew out," Kirkland said. "It sounds like they have the leak under control."

(Editing by Dale Hudson, Steve Orlofsky and Bernard Orr)

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