ST. PIERRE-JOLYS, Man. – Several thousand people in southern Manitoba have been told that a pipeline explosion could mean they’ll be without natural gas service for up to several days as temperatures hover close to —20 C.
“As far as the temperature is concerned, the words ‘polar vortex’ is what they’re saying,” Myron Dyck, a spokesman for the Town of Niverville, said on Saturday.
The explosion and fire at a TransCanada Pipelines valve site near St. Pierre-Jolys happened early Saturday morning, sending a massive fireball into the dark sky.
The flames were out by Saturday afternoon and there were no reported injuries.
But Manitoba Hydro said that in order to repair the line, TransCanada shut off its supply of natural gas for several municipalities affecting approximately 4,000 people.
The utility said it had no estimate from TransCanada about when service would be restored and that customers should prepare for the outage to last at least one day.
The temperature in Niverville on Saturday afternoon was —18 C and Environment Canada was calling for even colder temperatures on Sunday and Monday.