Federal Agency Joins Investigation into Colorado Gas Explosion

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FIRESTONE, Colo. (AP) — The National Transportation Safety Board has joined the investigation into a fatal Colorado house explosion blamed on unrefined natural gas flowing from a severed pipeline.

The Longmont Times-Call reported Wednesday (http://bit.ly/2r2W8Rz) the agency got involved because pipelines are considered transportation and because investigators want to look for safety issues that might have consequences elsewhere.

The April 17 explosion in Firestone killed two people and badly burned a third. State regulators said the severed 1-inch (2.5-centimeter) line was thought to be out of service but was connected to a nearby gas well with a valve turned on.

Firestone police and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation are also looking into the explosion.

State regulators ordered oil and gas companies to inspect and test all similar pipelines within 1,000 feet of occupied buildings.

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