O’FALLON, Mo. – The companies involved in a natural gas line rupture a week ago in O’Fallon, Missouri, reported to city hall Monday night, to try and figure out what went wrong and how to prevent future issues.

City officials have halted digging at a neighborhood fiber broadband installation site after another gas line strike forced residents on Sunshine Drive to evacuate.

That was just three miles from where a house exploded back in March.

“I was home, you could feel it, even in our neighborhood,” said Kathryn Jetter, a Sunshine Drive resident. “My kids at the school down the street, they felt the explosion. Everybody knew something had happened. It’s just obviously very scary. Yes, no one was hurt, that’s great, but that’s still somebody’s home.”

There have been 28 digging incidents involving gas lines since July, and 15 involved mistakenly marked gas lines.

The Head of Safety and Government Affairs at Gateway Fiber, Derek Leffert, said a state law called Chapter 319 unfairly penalizes them.

“The enforcement activity is only taken against the excavators and is not taken against utility,” he said. “Even though the utilities are responsible for the overwhelming majority of the damages.”

Gateway Fiber added that they have had issues with unmarked or improperly marked gas and utility lines.

A spokesperson for Spire said they were not invited to speak at the meeting. They said the volume of locator requests to dig at a site is high.

“The amount of locates for fiber has almost doubled in a year,” said Craig Hoeferlin, vice president of operation services and safety management at Spire. “And so, we’re doing everything we can to make sure we keep up with that and then make sure that those locates are performed accurately.”

Gateway Fiber said the city can help by enforcing penalties equitably, as they pay a $1,000 fine regardless of who is at fault.