UPDATE: Gas company causes loud noise heard in northern Boone County

Wednesday, April 27, 2011 | 7:02 p.m. CDT

COLUMBIA — Residents in northern Boone County reported hearing a loud noise that sounded like a jet engine between 7:30 and 8 p.m. Tuesday, said Gale Blomenkamp, Boone County Fire Protection District division chief.

The noise can be attributed to a leak on a Panhandle Eastern Pipe Line Co. natural gas pipeline, said John Barnett, Panhandle Eastern spokesman. 

Joint Communications received a call at 7:38 p.m. in regards to the gas leak. The caller reported a blowing gas leak of a high-pressure, 22-inch gas line between the intersection of Olden and Benedict roads, said Chuck Matalski, communications supervisor for Joint Communications.

A nearby landowner also called Panhandle Eastern at about 7 p.m. to report the leak. Company employees in the area responded and were able to isolate the pipeline and stop the flow of gas, Barnett said.

In order to do repair work, gas in the pipeline had to be vented out. Depending on where people were, the noise could have been caused by the leak or the process of venting, Barnett said. 

Customers were not affected by this leak. Panhandle Eastern had a team of employees on site investigating the cause of the leak, and the pipeline has not been repaired yet, Barnett said. 

Panhandle Eastern asked the Fire District to be on standby as a precaution in the event of any other emergencies. 

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