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Expect Large Gas Flares From Decker Power Plant Tuesday

On Tuesday, flames will shoot as high as 50 feet from Austin Energy's Decker Power Plant, as part of a test of the power plant's gas line.

If you're driving past the Decker Power Plant in northeast Austin on Tuesday and see huge, 50-foot flames shooting out from it, Austin Energy doesn't want you to panic.

It's all part of a test of the power plant's gas lines.

A private company that owns the gas pipeline that serves the Decker plant is doing the testing, but it needs to clear out all the gas first. The flames will be 30 to 50 feet high and burn for about four hours during the day.

Here's how Austin Energy explained it to the media:

In Case you get Calls – Public may see gas flare from Decker Power Plant A private company that owns a natural gas pipeline that serves the Austin Energy Decker Power Plant will be testing the integrity of the line by injecting water to ensure it is operating safely. To prepare for the test, the company must remove any remaining natural gas in the shut off line through flaring so that the gas is not released into the atmosphere. The flaring is expected to be conducted on Tuesday, Nov. 8, during daylight hours in the Decker Power Plant property. The flaring will produce a 30- to 50-feet-high flare that will last four hours or more. The company has contacted the Austin Fire Department and other law enforcement agencies in the area to make them aware of the scheduled work. The flaring will not interfere with any activities from nearby residents, schools or businesses. Austin Energy does not own the line and is not conducting the test. The test is being handled by the owner of the pipeline. Media note:Media access is not allowed into the Decker Power Plant.

Nathan Bernier is the transportation reporter at KUT. Got a tip? Email him at Follow him on Twitter @KUTnathan.
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