Five Killed in Explosion ALLENTOWN, Pa.Five people died in an apparent natural-gas explosion and fire that enveloped a neighborhood here, officials said Thursday, marking the third major blast in the U.S. since fall and heightening worries about aging pipelines that crisscross the nation. The blast Wednesday night followed recent natural-gas explosions in Philadelphia and a suburb of San Francisco that killed a total of nine people. The National Transportation Safety Board is set to hold hearings next month on the recent blasts and consider improvements in pipeline safety. The review comes amid a growing consensus that the U.S. has a problem with aging infrastructure, particularly underground pipelines that are hard to inspect. The pipe that blew in Allentown had been in service since 1928 <Snip> On Jan. 18, a gas pipeline exploded in Philadelphia, killing an employee of Philadelphia Gas Works and injuring six others who were responding to a report of gas odors in a residential area. That explosion sent a 50-foot fireball over northeastern Philadelphia. On Sept. 9, the explosion of a large gas-transmission line in San Bruno, Calif., near San Francisco, killed eight people and destroyed 37 homes. Gas-distribution accidents caused 291 deaths and 1,193 injuries from 1990 to March 2010, according to the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. Five Die in Gas Blast As Pipeline Worries Revive - WSJ.com So we have huge issues with our gas line infrastructure that have caused death and high cost personal damage loss. Levees that have failed causing high numbers of deaths. Collapsing bridges causing deaths. Our power gird has failed numerous times. What is it going to take for people to realize the very serious state of the deterioration has approached the serious level? Those who oppose addressing this issue say we can't afford fixing our country's infrastructure, maybe it's time we can't afford not to fix our infrastructure.