Posts Tagged ‘pipeline inspection’

RD547: Two popular methods of water-leak detection in one control unit

Monday, August 10th, 2015

Water leaks are not only costly to the water utility company but also to the consumer as well as the environment. The fact that water infrastructures are located underground already makes it a challenge to locate and pin-point leaks; but combine that with the fact that leaks can vary greatly in size, shape and characteristic depending on the material and surrounding geology, and you’ve got a problem that needs a range of techniques and a very versatile tool to tackle any leak in the most cost-effective way. Traditionally, two popular methods were used: acoustic and hydrogen tracer-gas. But recently, Radiodetection launched the RD547 that can do both methods of detection in a single control unit. It has three different microphones (suitable for ground measurements or attaching to pipe fittings) for acoustic methods of detection,  and a ground sensor for tracer-gas detection. The RD547 also has a color touchscreen with an LED backlight for daylight reading, Smart Mode settings to checking consistency of measurements. Click here to read the full article…

Who Oversees Pipeline Safety?

Wednesday, July 29th, 2015

The safety of pipelines is the accountability of pipeline companies who adhere to a comprehensive series of regulations issued by U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipelines and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) that governs every step of the process from construction to operation and maintenance. Proper inspection procedures, regulatory requirements, and the undertaking of necessary repairs are checked by federal and state inspectors to ensure that they are meticulously followed. PHMSA is also in-charge of enforcing the law against violations of pipeline safety regulations. They generally control interstate and intrastate hazardous liquids transmission pipelines, but may delegate some of the authority to state agencies (which are usually members of the National Association of Pipeline Safety Representatives) if they are consistent with federal regulations. In the case of pipeline incidents, The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is the agency responsible for investigating and reporting issues. They also produce recommendations to companies, industry groups, and regulators. To read the full article, click here…

Larissa Stendie: Learning the wrong pipeline lessons

Tuesday, July 28th, 2015

Over the last 20 years, an average of 250 pipeline incidents have been recorded in the U.S. and Canada. With each incident, we hear basically the same well-crafted PR line from the CEOs and Representatives of oil companies: We will learn from this incident and grow as an industry, and our fail-safe procedures will be foolproof next time. This was the message of BP CEO Tony Hayward in 2010 after the Deepwater Horizon spill. Enbridge said the same thing 5 years ago after a spill of 27,000 barrels of tar sands oil near Michigan’s Kalamazoo River was only discovered after 18 hours. Western States Petroleum Association sang the same tune after the recent spill on California’s Santa Barbara coast. And last week, Nexen joined the big oil company chorus after their pipeline leaked for two weeks spilling 31,000 barrels of tar sands oil near Long Lake. It’s becoming apparent to everyone that their fail-safe plans are not so fail-safe after all. If there is anything to be learned it’s that piping tar sands oil over wild areas and near human settlements just doesn’t work. And allowing the Kinder Morgan and Enbridge pipelines to be built will only prove that B.C. hasn’t learned anything from these tragedies at all. To read the full article, click here…

Citizen Pipeline Safety Committee Urges Feds To Uphold State Inspection Authority

Tuesday, June 16th, 2015

The thirteen member Citizens Committee on Pipeline Safety in Olympia, Washington, has reacted to the fact The Federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHSMA) is considering pulling back interstate agent agreements. These agreements currently authorize Washington and other states to inspect interstate pipelines on behalf of PHSMA, and the committee feels that this move will decrease the effectiveness of inspections and is a concern for public safety.

The committee states that maintaining the Washington state inspection authority will ensure public safety with the authority having faster response time, more public trust, and better knowledge of the local area. In the past the PHSA has been criticized for reports that lack depth and not frequent enough to be effective. Washington received its state authority to inspect pipelines after, in 2001, an explosion killed three people in Bellingham.

Read more here…