March 3, 2010 / 11:31 PM / in 8 years

One Peoples Gas worker killed in Chicago mishap

CHICAGO, March 3 (Reuters) - One Peoples Gas company worker was killed and another injured on Wednesday in a mishap involving a pipe they were pressure-testing, Chicago authorities said.

The workers were pressure-testing a 20-inch main pipeline with compressed air inside a reinforced hole near the Willis Tower in downtown Chicago when the incident occurred, a Peoples Gas spokeswoman said.

It was not immediately clear what happened, but no gas was involved and service was not interrupted, the spokeswoman said.

A passerby told local radio he heard a “boom and then a whoosh” followed by a cloud of dust emerging from the hole. Another passerby climbed in to help before firefighters arrived to remove the workers.

Peoples Gas, a regulated natural gas utility serving approximately 840,000 customers in Chicago, is a unit of Integrys Energy Group TEG.N. (Reporting by Andrew Stern; Editing by David Gregorio)

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