Friday, July 23, 2021

Dakota Access Pipeline Fined Over Safety Violations

The Department of Transportation's (DOT), Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), on Friday, announced a $93,200 Fine against the Operators of the Dakota Access Pipeline, citing Safety Violations.

In its Notice, the Administration said, Energy Transfer Violated Regulations on Drainage Valves for Stormwater, in at least Six Locations. The Company also did Not properly Correct Hazards relating to at least One Valve used for Nitrogen Release, according to the PHMSA Notice.

"At a field inspection of Johnsons Corner pump station, and during a subsequent review of records including the alarms generated in the operator's local station control system and SCADA system records, it was determined that multiple alarms occurred since commissioning of the pipeline indicating changes in relief valve's nitrogen pressure (which effects the valve relief pressure set point)," the Notice reads.

The Notice States that: the Johnsons Corner Valve Issue has Triggered Thousands of Alarms since the Pipeline began Operations Four years ago.

The PHMSA identified a further Five Safety Issues, including Outdated References to its own Operations Manuals, as well as Failure to Update an Integrity Management Program in keeping with Practical Operations. The Letter does Not Identify any Specific Instances of Oil Leakage from the Pipeline.

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