Utah Gas Worker Charged With Causing 'Catastrophe' in Apartment Building Explosion

A worker for Questar Gas in Utah is charged with causing an explosion that wreaked millions of dollars worth of damage to an apartment building, the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

In charges stemming from the October 2007 explosion, Salt Lake City fire investigators filed a report Tuesday that the worker twice punctured a gas main outside Country Lake Apartments while on a service call for a leaky gas range, the Salt lake Tribune reported.

The first hole happened after the worker struck the main while using a metal prodding bar in the ground near the building to learn whether natural gas was leaking into the soil. Then, using a shovel to clear soil off the gas line, he punctured another hole.

"A large 'whoosh' of gas escaped a second breach and ignited spectacularly," the Salt Lake Tribune said investigators wrote in a report.

The worker's actions did not follow Questar’s safety guidelines or those of the state Office of Pipeline Safety, the Salt Lake Tribune reported.

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