Pre-existing Defect a Central Factor in 2012 Pipeline Explosion in British
GATINEAU, QC, June 4, 2013 /CNW/ - The Transportation Safety Board of Canada
(TSB) has concluded in its investigation report (P12H0105) that a pre-existing
flaw in the pipe was the primary cause of a Westcoast Energy Inc. pipeline
explosion that occurred on 28 June 2012, approximately 40 km northwest of
Buick, British Columbia.
On 28 June 2012, the 16-inch Nig Creek pipeline ruptured; gas escaping from
the ruptured pipeline ignited, and the resulting fire spread to the
surrounding forested area. Approximately 25 minutes later, the 6.625-inch
Bonavista Energy Corporation pipeline, located 3 meters away in the same
right-of-way, ruptured due to its exposure to the fire, and the escaping gas
The TSB investigation found that certain types of pipe welded using a
low-frequency electric resistance welding technique have an increased
likelihood for the presence of defects such as cracks, and that this increases
the risk that the pipe might fail. Following the accident, the National Energy
Board directed Westcoast to conduct necessary integrity assessments and
repairs prior to seeking approval to return the pipeline into service.
Since the accident, Westcoast Energy Inc. has taken a number of actions aimed
at ensuring the integrity of its pipeline. It has conducted a successful
pressure test on the entire Nig Creek pipeline, and filed a monitoring and
verification plan for the pipeline's fitness for service with the National
Energy Board. It has also commissioned additional metallurgical analysis of
other segments of the pipeline and scheduled an extensive inspection of the
pipeline from the inside. Further, the company has begun a pipeline control
room management review. It is anticipated that the resulting changes will
improve response times during an emergency.
The TSB is an independent agency that investigates marine, pipeline, railway
and aviation transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of
transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or
determine civil or criminal liability.
Transportation Safety Board of Canada Media Relations 819-994-8053
The TSB is online atwww.tsb.gc.ca. Keep up to date throughRSS,Twitter
@TSBCanada,YouTube,Flickr and ourblog.
SOURCE: Transportation Safety Board of Canada
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CO: Government of Canada
NI: TRN OIL
-0- Jun/04/2013 17:00 GMT
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