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Enbridge gas pipe ruptures in British Columbia, prompting evacuation

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Enbridge gas pipe ruptures in British Columbia, prompting evacuation

An Enbridge Inc. natural gas transmission pipeline ruptured near Prince George, British Columbia, requiring the evacuation of a First Nation community and potentially causing a supply shortage for gas utility customers in the area.

Enbridge deployed emergency crews to isolate and depressurize two transmission lines nearby and closed off the affected area, according to an Oct. 9 statement. About 100 members of the Lheidli T'enneh First Nation have been evacuated from the area. There were no injuries reported.

"We're continuing to respond to the incident north of Prince George, B.C. [and] are working closely with local communities," Enbridge said in an Oct. 10 tweet. "Safety remains our top priority." The company also plans to launch an investigation into the pipeline rupture to find out the cause.

The electric and gas utility Fortis Inc. said the rupture may affect gas supply to its FortisBC Inc. customers. The affected pipeline delivers gas to FortisBC for distribution to customers in Prince George and other locations in British Columbia. Fortis instructed customers to limit their gas use as the utility coordinates with Enbridge and the authorities on the incident.

FortisBC serves about one million gas customers and about 70% could lose gas supply as a result of the rupture, Fortis said in an Oct. 10 news release.