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Engineer says changes would prevent failure of city gas line

Natural gas system improvements need to be made in the city of Thomson.

That's what Bruce Bagnasco, an engineer with Keck & Wood, told members of Thomson City Council during their Jan. 13 monthly meeting.

Mr. Bagnasco has recommended several changes -- ones that will prevent system failures for residential customers. Local industries have alternative solutions, if there were to be a situation where they could not receive gas supply from the city, according to City Administrator Don Powers.

"The city of Thomson's gas system has been modeled to reflect the actual pressure activities throughout the system during a very cold winter day when the temperature drops to about 5 degrees," Mr. Bagnasco said in his report. "It has been determined that while the high-pressure and low-pressure systems are adequate to handle such an event, the medium-pressure system has pressure problems and customer outages could occur."

Mr. Bagnasco explained that adding a 6-inch loop line from the border station to the intersection of Old Washington Road and Georgia Highway 17 would eliminate the bottleneck in the medium-pressure system and resolve current pressure problems within that particular system.

"This loop line, coupled with installation of a new pressure regulating station at the intersection of State Route 150 and Old Washington Road will provide additional capacity to accommodate future growth on the existing low-pressure system and in the industrial park on State Route 150," Mr. Bagnasco said.

He said the loop line and regulator station resolve the pressure problems that would occur on "a very cold winter day" and provide additional capacity to the medium- and low-pressure gas systems, but such improvements would be limited by the capacity of the city's high-pressure tap line.

Mr. Bagnasco also is recommending that the city install an 8-inch high-pressure loop line, parallel to the city's existing 6-inch steel tap line.

"This loop line would run along State Route 17 from Southern Natural's transmission pipelines to the State Route 296 intersection," he said. "This would provide more capacity to serve a significant amount of growth throughout the gas distribution system."

Cost figures have not been determined.

Web posted on Thursday, January 20, 2011

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