DEP finds no air hazards from natural gas pipeline blast

Written by The Associated Press | Jun 8, 2016 12:25 PM

Charred ground and trees are over the area where a natural gas explosion at a pipeline burned one person and damaged houses on Friday, April 29, 2016 in Salem Township, Pa. The explosion caused flames to shoot above nearby treetops in the largely rural area, about 30 miles east of Pittsburgh, and prompted authorities to evacuate businesses nearby. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

(Greensburg) -- State environmental regulators say there should be no adverse health effects from substances blown into the air when a natural gas pipeline exploded scorching 40 acres of a rural western Pennsylvania township. 

The state Department of Environmental Protection found some volatile compounds, including chloromethane, propene, benzene and xylene were released. 

But the DEP says air samples taken after the April 29 blast in Salem Township showed those who live nearby were exposed for only a short period and that the maximum levels detected were below levels of concern for short-term exposure. 

Spectra Energy of Houston operates the pipeline running from the Gulf of Mexico to eastern Pennsylvania.

The explosion in Salem Township was about 30 miles east of Pittsburgh and severely burned one homeowner.

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