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More than 1 million Wisconsin customers asked to conserve gas after pipeline malfunction

Amid sub-zero temperatures, more than one million customers across Wisconsin are being asked to conserve natural gas because of a pipeline malfunction

We Energies advised customers to immediately turn their thermostats to 62 degrees or lower Friday evening to prevent a widespread service outage.

Guardian Pipeline notified customers Friday that it had constrained the northbound flow of gas on one of its interstate pipelines due to unplanned maintenance at a compressor station in Illinois.

We Energies spokesperson Brendan Conway said Guardian had cut the utility’s gas supply by 30%.

Conway said the utility is drawing from liquified gas and propane storage facilities and has cut gas deliveries to business customers whose contracts allow for service interruptions. But because of the extreme cold gripping most of the nation the utility is unable to get gas from other pipeline suppliers.

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A spokesperson for the pipeline company said one of two malfunctioning valves had been restored as of Friday night and crews were working on the second to restore capacity “in a timely manner.”

We Energies said it would reassess the situation and update customers on Saturday.

In addition to turning down thermostats, the company asks residents to avoid secondary gas heaters, ovens, stoves and clothes dryers.

The National Weather Service was forecasting low temperatures of zero to minus 14 degrees across Wisconsin Friday night.

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