US Enterprise shuts natural gas liquids pipe after spill

15 August 2011 21:16  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Enterprise Products Partners shut down the Conway North natural gas liquids pipeline indefinitely following the discovery of a leak into the Missouri river on 13 August, a spokesman for the US-based natural gas and crude oil pipeline company said on Monday.

The pipeline was carrying natural gasoline at the time of the leak. Natural gasoline is a natural gas liquid used for a variety of applications in the petrochemicals and refining industries.

The leak was discovered early in the morning in a 10-mile (26km) section of the 33,600 bbl/day pipeline between Decatur, Nebraska, and Onawa, Iowa. The pipeline was immediately shut down, and the 10-mile section was isolated.

Enterprise spokesman Rick Rainey said up to 140,000 gal of natural gasoline leaked into the Missouri river. After the affected part of the pipeline was isolated, operators began to remove residual natural gasoline from that section of line by truck, Rainey said.

When the remainder of product is removed, divers will assess the damage to the line. Rainey said that the assessment would likely take place on Tuesday, but it depends on how much longer the trucking takes.

With no assessment of the damage so far, the company is unable to speculate on when the pipeline will be back on line, Rainey said.

The pipeline is usually on dry land away from the Missouri river, however the midwest flooding has caused the river to rise and flood much of the surrounding area.

The pipeline feeds petrochemical complexes, refineries and storage and distribution terminals in the northern midwest.

Rainey said the primary refineries served are in the Minneapolis area of Minnesota.

By: Sheena Martin
+1 713 525 2653

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