UPDATE: Scheduled Maintenance at Gas Facility in West Winfield caused odor

Oneida County Emergency Management said the Tennessee Gas Pipeline facility in Winfield was doing routine maintenance that caused an odor to resonate across Oneida County.

Posted: Oct 18, 2020 11:08 AM
Updated: Oct 18, 2020 6:31 PM

WEST WINFIELD, NY --- Kinder Morgan, the company that owns the Tennessee Pipeline Natural Gas Facility in West Winfield released a statement regarding the odor of gas across Oneida County.  

The Statement reads,

"At approximately 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time today, reports of a natural gas odor occurred following yesterday’s preventative maintenance on a pipeline segment on the Tennessee Gas Pipeline (TGP) system near its compressor station located in West Winfield, New York. There was no leak. The pipeline was depressurized during the scheduled maintenance work which involves the safe venting of some natural gas to the atmosphere.

There were no environmental impacts or evacuations associated with this event. Emergency responders responded to the planned maintenance, and the appropriate regulatory agencies are being notified."

This pipeline is almost 12,000 miles long and stretches from the Gulf of Mexico through New England including parts of Upstate New York.

According to WKTV Meteorologists, Sunday's southeast winds carried the odor across Oneida County as far as Rome. Oneida County reported 240 911 calls associated with an odor of gas. Deputy Director of Emergency Services Dan Appler said none of the responding fire departments found gas. Appler said it was Mercaptan, a harmless gas, what people were smelling.

"It was what they add to the natural gas. They add what's called mercaptan and that gives it the egg smelling odor," said Appler.

Appler said another concern is how the plant did not notify the county of the maintenance. Appler said the county notified other surrounding counties that the maintenance may cause an odor, but never called Oneida County. A concern the county will bring up in a follow-up meeting with the facility.


"Lesson learned here is they will contact us in the future if they are going to do scheduled maintenance. Like I said they contacted the other 3 counties, they just didn't contact the one that got all the phone calls," said Appler.

The county wants to continue to assure people there was never any danger to the public.

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WEST WINFIELD, NY - Oneida County Emergency Management said the Tennessee Gas Pipeline facility in Winfield was doing routine maintenance that caused an odor to resonate across Oneida County.

Management at the Tennessee Gas Pipeline facility tells County Officials the facility has finished purging the lines which should eliminate the odor,

Strong breezes caused the odor of natural gas to be blown across the county, which is why it could be smelled as far away as Westmoreland, New Hartford, and Rome. 

Stay with NewsChannel 2 for further information as it develops.

ORIGINAL STORY

NEW HARTFORD - Multiple fire departments are investigating what has been described as a strong odor of gas in the greater New Hartford area Sunday morning. 

As of 11:00 a.m. the Oneida County 911 dispatch website has listed several reports of "odor of gas outside" in and around New Hartford, Westmoreland, Rome, Utica, and Paris, among other locations. 911 dispatchers tell us fire departments are working to find the source and cause of the odor, which has been reported to NewsChannel 2 by several people who live in the area. 

We have reached out to National Grid for information. Their spokesperson says they are looking into it as well.

Stay with NewsChannel 2 for further information as it develops. 

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