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Pipeline Explosion in Manitoba Leaves Thousands without Heat in Extreme Artic Cold

Thousands of residents in the Canadian province of Manitoba are without heat during the coldest stretch in recent memory after a hug explosion tore through a natural gas pipeline.

Roughly 4,000 people in Manitoba currently have no gas in which to heat their homes during a time where temperatures barely make it above zero. During this time of year the province of Manitoba see temperatures drop to -68 degrees Fahrenheit.

The explosion did not result in any fatalities but after rupturing on Saturday the pipeline caught fire and burned for more than 12 hours before emergency crews could snuff out the blaze.

"We could see these massive 200- to 300-meter high flames just shooting out of the ground and it literally sounded like a jet plane," Paul Rawluk, a local resident of Manitoba, told CBC.

Canada's National Energy Board decided to evacuate the region as a precaution, according to reports from Think Progress.

High officials in the area say that it could take up to 72 hours before people have access to natural gas supplies.

Until workers are done restoring natural gas services, compressed natural gas is being transported to the area. This will help allow facilities and residents to keep the heat on.

The imported compressed gas will also be used to heat schools and churches where people have taken refuge.

Officials have asked residents in the area who have chosen to remain in their homes to turn down thermostats and to keep the use of electric heaters down to a minimum.

There is no evidence that indicates that the natural gas pipeline explosion was the result of foul play and the explosion is currently being labeled an accident.

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