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Energy company testing pipeline in Mexico again

The company that owns the Panhandle Easter Pipe Line that exploded in Mexico, Mo. last month will conduct testing of the line to check for issues with the pipe.

The testing will take place from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m. along the pipe section that runs west to east at Panhandle’s Centralia Compressor Station near Highway Z and ending near Highway J.

Energy Transfer said it will “hydrotest” the line, which means it will send water through the pipeline at extremely high pressure in order to test the strength.

This follows the same tests that were done last week on the line. During the testing, crews identified three sections of the pipe that need to be removed and replaced, officials said.

The test will happen in two phases. According to the company, the first phase is a spike test which takse the pipe to a pressure that meets or exceeds the minimum yield strength of the pipe and last for 30 minutes.

The second phase will be to test at a pressure lower than the spike test, but still above normal operating pressure for eight hours.

If the line does not hold the water, people in the area will likely hear a noise as the water is released from the pipe.

“There is no cause for alarm if this happens,” the company said in a press release. “Rather, it identifies specific segments in the line that need to be repaired or replaced, which is the purpose for the test.”

The pipeline ruptured March 3, damaging Highway 15. No one was injured in the incident, but a home under construction was incinerated.

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