Canadian pipeline operator Enbridge has released a statement in response to the Transportation Safety Board’s (TSB) investigation into the Shelley natural gas pipeline incident.
The incident took place on 9 October 2018, around 13.5km north of Prince George in British Columbia, Canada. According to news outlet CBC, the explosion was caused by stress cracks in the pipe, which sparked a huge fireball and resulted in the evacuation of over 100 people from their homes.
The TSB report found that the risk of the incident in Shelley was missed because the operator, a subsidiary of Enbridge, postponed a scheduled hazard management inspection by several months before the explosion took place.
In response, Michele Harradence, senior vice-president and COO of gas transmission and midstream at Enbridge, said: “We know this incident has caused concerns and disrupted the lives of many people in the area. For that, we apologise. We commit that we have learned from this incident and have taken steps to ensure the safety of our natural gas system.”
Since the incident, Enbridge has completed a comprehensive pipeline integrity programme on its natural gas pipeline system in British Columbia, to prevent similar incidents from happening and to significantly improve pipeline safety.
The programme has three key focus areas: enhanced pipeline inspections, enhanced maintenance screening criteria, and increased integrity digs.
The pipeline operator added that is its reviewing the TSB report carefully and is committed to ‘making further changes as needed to continually improve pipeline safety’.
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