Natural gas pipeline bursts in Canada, leaving thousands without heat

January 27, 2014 at 11:29 AM EST

A natural gas pipeline explosion in Manitoba, Canada around midnight CST Saturday has left nearly 4,000 without heat in Canada and shortages in the United States as temperatures continue to drop below freezing.

The explosion of a TransCanada pipeline near Otterburne, Manitoba, towered over 600 feet high, according to reports, and left a fire that burned for more than 12 hours and a state of local emergency declared.

Residents affected by the gas outage were told by several gas companies to turn their thermostats down and to make sure all appliances that use natural gas were turned off. In addition, Minneapolis-based company Xcel Energy, which provides natural gas to more than 100,000 customers through the pipeline supply, asked their customers in North Dakota, Wisconsin and Minnesota to reduce their natural gas usage.

The outage is currently in its third day and has left many struggling to stay warm and to keep their pipes from bursting. It’s also affected those who rely on natural gas for their businesses, leaving them unable to operate. Though no official restoration timeline has been given, TransCanada Pipeline reports they are currently working on a bypass of the damaged section, saying that gas could start to resume Monday night.