PHMSA conditionally allows Colonial Pipeline to restart Line No. 1

The US Pipeline and Hazardous Safety Administration gave Colonial Pipeline Co. conditional permission to restart Line No. 1, which was shut down after an estimated 6,000-8,000 bbl of gasoline leaked from it near Shelby, Ala., on Sept. 9.

The conditional approval, which James Urisko, southern region director for PHMSA’s Office of Public Safety, issued on Sept. 20, approved construction and operation of a bypass around the affected area as a temporary measure to restore service while Colonial removes the failed segment and develops a comprehensive restart plan that the US Department of Transportation agency ordered earlier (OGJ Online, Sept. 19, 2016).

Following construction and positioning of the 500-ft bypass of pipeline around the leak site on Sept. 20, the oil products pipeline operator performed a successful hydrostatic test to confirm its structural integrity and completed the connection or “tie-in” of the bypass segment to the main line this morning, Colonial Pipeline said on Sept. 21.

“Based on operational progress made overnight and the anticipated schedule of work ahead, Colonial Pipeline projects that Line 1 will be restarted this evening,” it indicated.

“Subsequent to restart, it is expected to take several days for the fuel delivery supply chain to return to normal,” the company said. “Some markets served by Colonial Pipeline may experience, or continue to experience, intermittent service interruptions. Colonial continues to move as much gasoline, diesel and jet fuel as possible and will continue to do so as markets return to normal.”

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

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