Blast Zone

Do you have a pipeline in your backyard? Make sure you have an emergency plan.

Rover indicates in the maps they published in 2014 that there is a "Quarter Mile Buffer" corridor for their 42" pipeline.

Pipeline companies want us to believe that leaks and explosions are so rare that they are not a cause for concern. A brief survey of recent events proves otherwise. Below is a short selection of gas pipeline fails demonstrating that catastrophes are sufficiently common that they cannot be ignored. Each of the events occurred without warning.

Rover refers to the area surrounding a pipeline that may incur damage if there would be an explosion as the "buffer corridor". Rover indicates in the maps they published in 2014 that there is a "Quarter Mile Buffer" corridor for this 42" pipeline. There are studies indicating that the potential impact radius for a 42" pipeline pressurized at 1400 psi (Rover's size) would be closer to 1,100 feet (nearly a half-mile in diameter). See our FAQs page for more information. The map below was supplied by Rover to the Ann Arbor, Michigan Public Library and is available at this online link.

The image at the top of the page is from the 11/13/15 Bakersfield CA explosion. Read the full article here.

Would a "Quarter Mile Buffer" Corridor be enough between you and what you see below?

Read about recent well-publicized pipeline explosions across the USA, most of them much smaller than Rover, some occurring in pipelines only three years post-construction.

The events listed below is by no means inclusive - see this wikipedia listing to get a better idea of the magnitude of damages.

30" Spectra Energy

4/29/2016 - Salem Township, PA

It is worth the time to read the articles and view the video of the massive crater created by this 30" pipeline, 12" smaller than Rover. One house completely gone, another house with siding melted off from the explosion.

36" Pacific Gas & Electric

11/13/15 Bakersfield, CA

  • 200 feet flames in explosion, shook earth like an earthquake
  • Caused by piece of farm equipment hitting pipeline
  • Schools closed down two miles away

The image at the top of the page is from this disaster. Read the full article here.

42" ET Partners

6/14/2015 - Cuero, TX

Three year pipeline (installed 2012) develops "material failure" in a weld due to too much tension on part of the line.

  • Flames 100 feet in the air
  • Blast area .3 miles by .2 miles
  • 16 people evacuated

If this "material failure" happens in the new same-size pipeline being built by by the same company entrapping Silver Lake, Michigan, there is the great potential of catastrophic damage to the lives of every resident and camper within the "buffer corridor".

Read more here San Antonio BizJournal

San Bruno explosion: Some victims identifiedA full day after the natural gas explosion and inferno that turned a San Bruno neighborhood into ash, the wreckage was still too hot for people to be let back in - but families of some of four people killed in the blaze got the news they had dreaded. Investigators with search-and-rescue dogs spent Friday picking through the debris for more fatalities, with no new finds. The list of government agencies investigating the blast grew as a National Transportation Safety Board team arrived to take over the probe. Representatives of Pacific Gas and Electric Co. said they did not know what caused a 30-inch, high-pressure gas pipeline to rupture at about 6:15 p.m. Thursday, setting off a firestorm that destroyed 37 homes in the Crestmoor neighborhood west of Interstate 280 and badly damaged eight others. A body was found outside her home, and the coroner was checking dental records, relatives said. According to her family, Torres - who uses a wheelchair - had been smelling gas lately, and she was at home Thursday awaiting PG&E crews to arrive and check her gas stove, which wasn't working. Geological reports registered a shaker of 1.3 magnitude at the time of the explosion, which officials believe was from the pipeline detonating. By evening, coroner's investigators and emergency responders had searched 95 percent of the affected homes for victims, without finding anyone. At least 52 people suffered burns, smoke inhalation and other injuries, and three of them were in critical condition with third-degree burns, authorities said. Among those promising to investigate the blast are state legislators, and the San Bruno Police Department is treating the area as a crime scene - another reason residents were not being allowed back in. "[...] we know what caused it, we want to preserve anything of evidentiary value," Telford said.

36" Kinder Morgan

2/15/2017 Refugio, TX

  • Flames could be seen 150 miles away
  • Lit up the night like day
  • Explosion felt 60 miles away
  • Shook houses 20 miles away

"Kinder Morgan released a statement saying they shut down the pipeline segment as soon as they were notified and regulatory agencies were alerted" -- HOW KIND OF THEM!

This epic pipeline fail occurred in a rural area, with a pipeline much smaller than Rover.

Watch the news report above, then read Remembering the Sissonville pipeline explosion from one year after the explosion.

20" Columbia

12/11/2012 Sissonville, WV

The cause of the explosion was found to be corrosion. The Rover pipeline is over four times as large as this pipeline.

  • Melted a football field length stretch of Interstate 77 "and it looked like lava, just boiling"
  • "The emergency response was the difference: 'The Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department, West Virginia State Police, the volunteer fire service, everyone did a perfect job in working together to reduce further harm to the community.'"

Fortunately the community within the blast zone was not entrapped such that the emergency workers could reduce harm.

20" Consumers Power

5/4/2015 Lyndon Township, MI

  • 50 foot crater created
  • '... the gas was shooting straight up and the weather conditions did not warrant emergency evacuations. “Everyone was lucky on this one,”'

The 2015 explosion was close to home, and fortunate in consequences. Note that this pipeline is one quarter the size and less than half the pressure of Rover.

See the crater and read the Washtenaw County, MI Emergency Services Incident Report here:

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