A shocking report showed the service provider knew of leaks at sites before the natural gas explosions in Jackson that left one woman dead and destroyed three homes.

According to a report covered by WLBT3, Atmos Energy Corporation discovered a leak on November 11 at 185 Bristol. However, the leaks were reported as “non-hazardous” and chose not to repair it.

danger sign depicted outside of gas leak

It was also reported by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), that a second leak was discovered just weeks later at nearby 1146 Shalimar. However, that leak was also deemed non-hazardous and was repaired.

The explosion in Bristol occurred at 8:14 am on January 24 and took the life of an 82 year old woman. No fatalities or injures were reported following the explosion at Shalimar, but two homes were completely destroyed. The 82 year old woman was Clara Barbour.

“These reports show that Atmos Energy Corporation ignored two very serious leaks that cost the life of an elderly woman,” said attorney Letitia Johnson, managing partner of the Southeastern Region of Singleton Schreiber. “That this is a largely African American community primarily affected is not lost on anyone.”

If you or someone you know has been injured in a gas explosion, contact the personal Jackson injury attorneys at Singleton Schreiber by emailing info@singletonschreiber.com or by calling 866-331-9303.

Jackson Mississippi Gas Leak Explosions

The NTSB stated it was continuing to investigate the tragic explosions and was looking into Atmos’ leak assessment methods. 

Gas leaks and explosions pose significant risks to public safety, infrastructure, and the environment in cities like Jackson, Mississippi. With its aging infrastructure and dense population, Jackson faces unique challenges in preventing and mitigating these incidents.

Gas leaks often occur due to various factors, including corroded pipelines, improper installation, excavation damage, or natural disasters like storms or earthquakes. In a city like Jackson, where the gas pipeline network has been in place for decades, the aging infrastructure becomes particularly vulnerable to corrosion and leaks. Additionally, with ongoing urban development and construction activities, the risk of accidental damage to gas lines increases.

One of the primary concerns associated with gas leaks is the potential for explosions. Natural gas, which is highly flammable, can ignite with even a small spark, leading to devastating explosions. These explosions can result in loss of life, severe injuries, destruction of property, and disruption of essential services.

In Jackson, the consequences of gas explosions can be especially dire due to the city’s dense urban fabric and older buildings. Older structures may not meet modern safety standards or have outdated gas systems, increasing the likelihood of leaks and explosions. Furthermore, the close proximity of buildings means that an explosion in one location could quickly spread to neighboring areas, amplifying the impact and complicating emergency response efforts.

Preventing gas leaks and explosions requires a multi-faceted approach involving proactive maintenance, regular inspections, public awareness campaigns, and collaboration between utility companies, city officials, and residents. Utility companies must invest in upgrading and maintaining the aging infrastructure to minimize the risk of leaks. Regular inspections and monitoring of gas pipelines using advanced technologies can help detect potential issues before they escalate into emergencies.

Public awareness campaigns play a crucial role in educating residents about the signs of gas leaks and the importance of reporting suspicious odors or hissing sounds promptly. Encouraging residents to install carbon monoxide detectors and gas alarms in their homes can provide an early warning system and save lives in the event of a leak.

City officials also have a responsibility to enact and enforce regulations that promote gas safety standards in construction and development projects. This includes ensuring proper permitting processes for excavation work near gas pipelines and enforcing building codes that require the installation of safety measures such as automatic shut-off valves and pressure regulators.

Gas leaks and explosions present significant risks to public safety and infrastructure in Jackson, Mississippi. Addressing these risks requires a comprehensive approach that includes proactive maintenance, regular inspections, public awareness campaigns, and strong regulatory measures. By working together, stakeholders can reduce the likelihood of gas-related incidents and protect the well-being of the community.

“Atmos must be held responsible and it should be all hands on deck to repair any potential problems that could cause future explosions,” Ms. Johnson added. “The people who live in this area need to feel safe, and with explosions like this no one is sleeping well at night.”

Anyone injured in a gas leak explosion in Jackson, MS should contact Singleton Schreiber by calling 866-331-9303 or by emailing info@singletonschreiber.com