Public Service Commission cites LG&E after December house explosion


by WHAS11

Posted on June 26, 2012 at 3:01 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jun 26 at 6:21 PM

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- The Public Service Commission is citing LG&E with four violations.

"The commission staff beloved when people responded our here to a report of a gas leak they didn't do the things that they should have done in order to ensure public safety," Kentucky Public Service Commission spokesman Andrew Melnykovych said.

The explosion happened back in December. It destroyed a house at 5206 River Trail Place in the Indian Falls subdivision in Okolona. Family members escaped the home, but a family dog died and other homes were also damaged.

The PSC is citing Louisville Gas and electric for safety violations. They carry penalties of up to $25,000 each day they occurred.

The explosion happened while LG&E crews were investigating a report of a possible gas leak in the neighborhood. The blast happened two and a half hours after the first LG&E worker arrived.

"There were things in that 2 hours span that didn't happen and should have happened and also following the explosion things that should have happened that didn't happen," Melnykovych said.

Chris Whelan with LG&E said, "our crews were out there at the time and we will continue to work with the KPSC."

The PSC said LG&E didn't warn residents fast enough and it didn't look for other dangerous gas leaks.

Tim Rose lives near where the explosion happened. He said there was a lot of confusion and lack of communication that morning.

"There was a lot of concern with the neighbors and myself about when we could actually re-enter our homes. A lot if us stood on the corner and actually waited for I don't know how long before a representative even came and talked to us," Rose said.

The PSC is also citing LG&E for having too much pressure on the gas line that exploded.

"They should have cleared everyone out. I think that they put everyone's life really in danger if they knew it," Rose said.

LG&E has 20 days to respond to the violations. The PSC said their investigation did not find whether the violations caused the explosion.