Feds: Pipeline Leak Will Cost Kinder Morgan

Monday, May 16, 2011 @ 05:05 PM gHale

Kinder Morgan Products Pipelines is facing a $425,000 fine for pipeline safety violations after an October 2009 incident in Perth Amboy, NJ, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA).

“We will hold pipeline operators accountable when they put the public or the environment at risk,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “Pipeline operators must be vigilant about following safety regulations to prevent accidents and keep our communities safe without disrupting energy supplies.”

Seven probable violations emanated from the October 2009 accident, PHMSA officials said. These violations include allegations the company failed to have and follow written startup and shutdown procedures, and failed to have and use other measures to detect abnormal operating conditions.

The accident caused about 8,600 gallons of hazardous liquid to release into the dike containment area around the company’s Perth Amboy Terminal.

“PHMSA is committed to making sure operators do not delay in assessing the integrity of their pipeline systems,” said PHMSA Administrator Cynthia Quarterman. “Today’s action underscores the importance that all pipeline operators address threats their systems may pose to public safety and the environment.”

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