NTSB Press Release

National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs


NTSB TO RELEASE FACTUAL INFORMATION ON THE AUGUST 19, 2000 GAS PIPELINE EXPLOSION NEAR CARLSBAD, NM

June 18, 2002

As part of its continuing investigation into the gas pipeline explosion near Carlsbad, New Mexico on August 19, 2000, the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) will open a public docket and release a series of factual reports at 11:00 a.m., on June 20, 2002.

About 5:30 a.m., on Saturday, August 19, 2000, a 30-inch El Paso Natural Gas Company gas transmission pipeline ruptured and the contents caught fire in a remote area adjacent to the Pecos River in Eddy County, New Mexico. Twelve persons, including five children, who were camping and fishing under a concrete and steel bridge that supported the pipeline across the river, were killed and their three vehicles destroyed. Two nearby steel suspension bridges for gas pipelines crossing the river were extensively damaged.

The reports to be released are factual in nature and do not provide any analysis. They will include investigative group reports in the following areas -survival factors, operations, human performance, internal corrosion training, compliance inspections, and pipeline system configuration.

Additional reports will be added to the public docket as they become available. Analysis of the accident, along with conclusions and a determination of probable cause, will come at a later date at a public meeting at NTSB headquarters.

Note to Media: A CD Rom containing the Carlsbad factual information will be available from the NTSB's Office of Pubic Affairs, 490 L'Enfant Plaza, SW (6th floor), Washington, DC, beginning at 11:00 a.m., Thursday, June 20, 2002. This is a document release only; no interviews will be conducted.

NTSB Media Contact:
Keith Holloway
(202) 314-6100
hollowk@ntsb.gov 

 

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The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged with determining the probable cause
of transportation accidents, promoting transportation safety, and assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.