Two more men have been arrested in connection with explosions along the trans-Alaska pipeline less than two miles from their homes outside Fairbanks.
Alaska state troopers William J. Freeman, 21, a cook and baker, and Donald E. Drum, 19, a painter, Wednesday night and charged them with malicious destruction of property by placing and exploding dynamite near the pipeline in July 20. They are being held without bail in the Fairbanks Correction Center.
A third man, Larry D. Wertz, 26, a fur trapper, was arrested Tuesday and charged with the same crime. District Court Judge H. E. Crutchfield on Wednesday ordered that Wertz undergo a psychiatric examination. The judge labeled Wertz a "danger to society" and ordered him held without bail pending the outcome of the examination.
All three men live near the Eliott Highway about 1 1/2 to 2 miles from where a series of dynamite blasts dented supports and ripped 20 to 30 yards of insulation off the pipeline. The oil flow there was not interrupted.
Meanwhile, technicians restarted the pumps on the pipeline at Valdez today, hoping the first oil in the 800-mile pipeline would reach the terminal without further delay.
The technicians restarted the pumps after completing government-ordered repairs on 14 welds in the oil terminal at Valdez, an ice-free port on Alaska's southern coast.
The pipeline was shut down for about 12 hours while the repairs were made - the fifth delay in 38 days.
A spokesman for Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., which operates the pipeline, said the oil should began gushing into storage tanks about 12 hours after the pumps were started.
The pipeline has been plagued with explosions, a cracked section of pipe, power supply problems and faulty welds since the oil began moving five weeks ago.
An Alyeska spokesman said that federal officials have not formally approved the weld work but still gave the consortium permission to restart the line.
Department of Transportation officials had said the welds were faulty and did not meet federal safety standards.
But Alyeska noted that the questioned sections of pipe had withstood testing pressures 2 1/2 times those of normal pipeline operations. Alyeska also denied that it was notified of the alleged flaws a week ago.