Fires From Ruptured Natural Gas Lines Destroyed San Francisco In 1906

ScreenHunter_465 Jan. 29 16.09

Just think what 3,000 psi CNG lines would do.


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20 Responses to Fires From Ruptured Natural Gas Lines Destroyed San Francisco In 1906

  1. John M says:

    It would never be approved for use today.

  2. FundMe says:

    The Great Fire of London was a major conflagration that swept through the central parts of the English city of London, from Sunday, 2 September to Wednesday, 5 September 1666…..Me I love nuclear tech but if I lived on a subduction zone ala Fukushima I would be protesting with the rest of them….it is a matter of risk ,,,,how to judge it…I cant help.. it is a matter for each individual…of course if you neighbour is saving radioactive material …all bets are off.

    • Gail Combs says:

      I can see the cooling towers of a Nuke plant out the window. I rather it was thorium (LFTR)

      • FundMe says:

        I have lived within sphsitithfnn f sivhaotob sista s shittfds distance of one and Im ok the saying goes ..I used to be a werewolf but nowooooowwww I am ok….and sure thorium will be a boon to mankind as will the pebble bed reactors as will any of the off the shelf nukes.

      • FundMe says:

        my prediction is that eventually you will be able to buy them (thorium reactors) on ebay

        • FundMe says:

          Well while I am predicting …We will be running offshore excursions for our grand children’s children to see the twisted rusting wrecks of the offshore wind turbines… showing them the folly of their parents.

        • Eric Simpson says:

          China’s doing thorium reactors, we aren’t, right?

          China’s doing all kinds of nuclear reactors up the yin yang, no pun there. Not us. China’s doing coal too. China’s doing all of the above, and more. We, we sit on Obama’s fat rear and try to stop pipelines from transporting a little bit of oil, and send out little bureaucrats to shut down our coal plants across this once proud land. And, who knows, but China is possibly a future foe, and we shouldn’t let ourselves get bowled over by China. Disaster is lurking for us, and doesn’t involve the sea rising a few inches.

          A great place to get the latest on energy developments here and in China is at the futurist Next Big Future, here’s an article from yesterday on a small scale hot fusion project:

  3. Luke of the D says:

    Well this is news to me… did they really have natural gas pipelines in 1906 in San Francisco? I know it was first really discovered in 1776 (yeah for that year!) but when was it first really used? I actually work in the petroleum industry and have no idea when cities tarted using methane for fuel and no idea when San Francisco began transporting it… and at 3000 psig? How did they compress the gas in 1906? Or was that the discovery pressure out of the well? Forgive me for asking, but I am terrible at finding stuff online and no longer have encyclopedia collection that might answer such a question.

    • Sean says:

      Have you ever heard of the “gaslight era”? It was the late19th century and extended into the early 20th century. My guess is that they had a lot of low pressure pipe running through the city for heating and cooking as today but they likely still had plenty of gaslights in 1906.

      • Luke of the D says:

        But was it actually methane? Or was it “gas” in a liquid form (like kerosene or whale oil or something)? I don’t know… I’m just asking.

        • Sean says:

          It was largely methane but not quite like the natural gas we get today. Can’t say what happened in San Francisco but many areas had coal seam gas and it often was contaminated with sulphur compounds and other noxious items.. The natural gas today is purified and a small amount of methyl mercaptan is added.

        • Anthony S says:

          It was often Coal gas made from heating coal and steam together, resulting in a mixture of Carbon monoxide, and hydrogen gas.

        • Shazaam says:

          Yep and they called it coal gas. Coal gassification isn’t new.

          That was why the really old slapstick (cartoons and movies) showed someone who wanted to “end it all” sticking their head in the unlit oven.

          Suicide by Carbon Monoxide poisoning……

  4. Charles Nelson says:

    Well I never…Real Science meets up in the middle with the Greenies!
    Eeeeek, natural gas man, it’s poisoning our water and causing cancer and messing with our hormones man…AND it’s causing Global Warming.
    Eeeeek, natural gas dude, it’s sure causin’ some Warmin’ for sure!…gonna burn us all alive and if those tuh-rists get a hold of it, we’re doomed….dooooomed.

  5. Charles Nelson says:

    P.S. Almost without exception every home and building in urban England is hooked up to natural gas.

    • Luke of the D says:

      In the USA too (except New England where they use fuel oil). So, just to ask, what’s your point exactly with this post-script?

      • FundMe says:

        point is lets not scare ourselves unduly, we already have to contend with the globull warming thingy and please jesu not the globull cooling thingy…. lets not add another nothing to scare ourselves with.

    • David, UK says:

      Charles Nelson says:
      January 30, 2014 at 1:03 am

      P.S. Almost without exception every home and building in urban England is hooked up to natural gas.

      It’s an exaggeration to say “almost without exception.” Many authorities will not allow the installation of gas in multistorey buildings for safety reasons. I lived in one multistorey building or another for about 20 years and it was electric all the way.

  6. catweazle666 says:

    In the UK before the conversion to North Sea Gas in the 1960/70s, coal gas was in universal use. This consisted of carbon monoxide and hydrogen, and the calorific value was often improved by the addition of water gas, sometimes carburetted water gas containing thermally cracked hydrocarbons. Apart from its extreme propensity for explosions and very high toxicity, its calorific value was 25% greater than the North Sea gas that replaced it, with much higher burning temperature leading to much greater cooking and heating efficiencies, a factor that was not taken into account when the pricing for the new gas was worked out (surprise!).

    It also contained variable amounts of volatile organic chemicals that gave it its characteristic odour, and, depending on the efficiency of the iron oxide filters at the gas works, a certain amount of hydrogen sulphide, which caused tarnishing of meals, particularly silver, and blackening of lead based paint.

    I imagine most of the USA used a similar system.

    Back in the 1960s, I worked for some time in an old gas works, the retort house involved proper 1880s Victorian working conditions, practically unbreathable atmosphere of ammonia, coal tar and carbon monoxide, great heat, lots of things to burn and otherwise attack the unwary, a modern Health and Safety officer would have a heart attack!

    So, everything taken into account, I consider that there were more advantages than disadvantages from conversion from town gas to natural gas.

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