Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Entergy to upgrade natural gas piping in Baton Rouge

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BATON ROUGE - Entergy is upgrading some of its natural gas piping in Baton Rouge after the federal government made recommendations that utility companies replace aging pipes.

In the last decade gas leaks have killed more than 130 people in the US, injured 600 and caused $2 billion worth of damage. Entergy is voluntarily upgrading its piping in an effort to prevent a leak in Baton Rouge.

"Even a small leak over time can build up to where you have a big fire, explosion or both," said Patrick Courreges with the Office of Conservation. "I believe most companies are recognizing the wisdom of go ahead and replace and upgrade your lines before you see those kinds of problems."

Replacement work starts in April with century old cast iron located in the older areas of the city.

"The biggest concern is the issue of erosion," Courreges said. "They're taking care of something before it gets to that level of a problem."

The 100 mile project will take a decade to complete and cost Entergy customers $65 million. Those people will pay 43 cents more during the first year of work, but that cost will increase every year following. But, those footing the bill say the increase is well worth peace of mind.

"Even though I'm on a fixed income, something like that seems immaterial to the fact that everybody as a whole will benefit."

Once work begins Entergy customers will be able to track progress online on the company's website.


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