When natural gas is used as a vehicle fuel, it is stored in cylinders of thick-walled, reinforced aluminum, steel or composite materials. These cylinders are required to comply with strict regulations, and have proven their ability to withstand severe abuse, even under conditions more stringent than those for testing gasoline storage tanks.
Natural gas tanks have been tested in high-speed crashes and bonfires, and performed extraordinarily well, especially when compared to the risks of explosion with gasoline. In vehicles that were totally destroyed in crash tests, the only component of the vehicle remaining intact was the gas cylinder. A research expert recently said, “If you were introducing gasoline to the market today, you likely couldn’t do it.”
The existing natural gas delivery system also has a proven safety record. According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Transportation, the natural gas transmission and distribution system (1.9 million Km of pipes and distribution points) is the safest way to transport energy in the United States.
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