The Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) said that Columbia Gas of Ohio has not followed the correct operating procedures regarding the gas service line. The company was ordered to pay a $ 400,000 fine based on the PUCO investigation into the August 2017 home fire, which caused an estimated $ 83,000 property damage.
A personnel survey at PUCO has shown that an excavator has hit an unidentified 2-inch natural gas service line when installing a new water pipe to the house. Columbia records were unable to identify the presence of any of the two natural gas service lines that provide the property. When Columbia responded to the scene, they could not identify the natural gas service line that fed the fire.
PUCO employees concluded that Columbia Gas did not follow its operating procedures when leaving the service line in 2012 and failed to properly disconnect it from the main line. On several occasions, Columbia has not investigated contradictory data about the existence of two service lines in the accommodation. Columbia also did not respond and switched off the flow of natural gas in time.
In its mission, the committee noted that Columbia has complied with the guidelines of PUCO employees to update company procedures with respect to underground location determination, service decoupling and response to emergency situations.
The order, the agreement submitted by Columbia and PUCO employees and a copy of the PUCO study is available in the case classification for case 19-452-GA-GPS.
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