Compliance Verification Activity Report 1516-014 – Aurora Pipe Line Company Ltd.

Compliance Verification Activity Report - Aurora Pipe Line Company Ltd. [PDF 354 KB]

Type of Compliance Verification Activity: Field Inspection

Activity #: 1516-014
Activity start: 28/09/2015
Activity End: 28/09/2015

Related Activity Numbers:

Inspection Officer Number(s): 2477, 2507T

Incident #:
Landowner Complaint File #:

Company: Aurora Pipe Line Company Ltd.

Facility Names): Carway Pipeline and Carway Loop Line - 8" and 12" adjacent crude oil lines, both approximately 750 m in length that extend to a valve site on the US border.

Province(s): Alberta

Theme(s): Environmental Protection

Compliance Tools Used: Corrected in field (Corrected Non-Compliance) (1)

Purpose

This activity was undertaken to verify compliance with the following regulatory requirements.

 X  NEB Act

 X Onshore Pipeline Regulations

 X  CSA Standard Z662 Oil and Gas Pipeline Systems

    Other:

    Electricity Regulations

     Processing Plant Regulations

    Pipeline Crossing Regulations Part I

    Pipeline Crossing Regulations Part II

Regulatory Instrument

OC-11, XO-9-67

Observations & Discussion

Observations & Discussion
Date visited Location Theme Compliance Confirmed
28-Sep-15 Block Valve Site Environmental Protection Yes

Observations

- Site was fenced in with barbed wire fence surrounded by cattle fencing. There were some gaps between the fence and ground, however the cattle fencing provided another layer of protection for the site and NEB staff have no concerns.

- Identification signage on the entrance gate included the operating company name and emergency contact information.

- Gravel is soft and sandy and had several disturbances from wildlife digging throughout the site. A Plains Midstream representative stated that there are no wildlife deterrents on site, however there is low risk from the digging. NEB staff have no concerns.

- A Plains Midstream representative was observed filling in a wildlife hole.

- A Plains Midstream representative stated that weed spraying is conducted on an annual basis, or more frequently as needed. NEB staff verified via a weed spraying log that the last time the site had been sprayed was in June 2015.

- Plains Midstream representatives confirmed that the valve site is within a fire zone, and are therefore required to keep the area within the fenceline clear of vegetation. NEB staff observed that there were no tall plants growing in the area within the fenceline.

- Plains Midstream representatives stated that an aerial patrol is conducted over the right-of-way (RoW) and valve site approximately once a week, and that Operations staff monitor the valve site approximately once per month. It was also stated that helicopter patrols are only performed when a pressure anomaly has been identified.

- Plains Midstream representatives stated that the current product being transported in the pipelines is high sulphur crude. NEB staff noted that the facility and RoW signage indicate that the product being transported is butane, which Plains Midstream representatives confirmed has not been transported in approximately 5-6 years. Plains Midstreams representatives also stated that the pipeline was approved to transport 'liquid petroleum products', and that butane is the most volatile product that the pipeline can carry.

Observations & Discussion
Date visited Location Theme Compliance Confirmed
28-Sep-15 Pipeline RoW Environmental Protection No

Observations

- Signage was missing from the north side of the drainage. Signage on the south side of the drainage had outdated company name and emergency contact information.

- At a fence at one end of the pipeline RoW, signage on the north side had been knocked down. Signage on the south side of the fence line was slightly tilting and had outdated company name and emergency contact information.

Observations & Discussion
Date visited Location Theme Compliance Confirmed
28-Sep-15 Pipeline Right-of-Way (RoW) Environmental Protection Yes

Observations

- Pipelines share a 90 m wide RoW.

- The RoW is located in privatly-owned native pasture land.

- Weeds were observed throughout the RoW, however this was consistent with surroundings. A Plains Midstream representative stated that weed management at this location consists of spraying the block valve site annually between the facility fence and cattle fence, and weed management of the RoW is conducted by the landowners.

- Pipeline identification signage was present on both sides of the road crossing.

- A small seasonal drainage crosses the RoW. At the time of the inspection the drainage had low standing water.


Compliance Summary

Compliance Summary
Theme Compliance Tools Used Corrective Action Due Date
Environmental Protection Corrected in field (Corrected Non-Compliance) 01/10/2015
Date/Time visited Location
28/09/2015 2:40:00 PM Pipeline RoW

Observations

- Signage was missing from the north side of the drainage. Signage on the south side of the drainage had outdated company name and emergency contact information.

- At a fence at one end of the pipeline RoW, signage on the north side had been knocked down. Signage on the south side of the fence line was slightly tilting and had outdated company name and emergency contact information.

Regulatory Requirements

Plains Midstream Canada Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) 12.10 entitled 'Pipeline Warning Signage' states the following:

"PMC pipeline warning signs must meeting the following requirements:

[…] Mandatory information includes the following printed on a background of sharply contrasting colour:

  • The word Warning, Caution, or Danger prominently displayed. For example in 25 mm high bold lettering.
  • The type of pipeline system, including the substance the pipeline transports, prominently displayed. For example High-Pressure Natural Gas Pipeline in 13 mm bold lettering.
  • Plains Midstream Canada.
  • The name of the pipeline if it is different from Plains Midstream Canada.
  • Emergency notification information that includes an emergency telephone number and area code."

AND

"Install signs at each side of the crossing where a pipeline crosses a roadway, railway, or watercourse."

AND

"Replace any pipeline warning signs that are missing, destroyed, defaced, worn out, or illegible."

AND

"Update pipeline warning signs within 180 days of any changes made to the required information."

Corrective Action or Request Required

The NEB IO requested that the company representatives complete and provide photographic evidence of the following:

- replacement of the missing signs;
- updated information on the outdated signs; and
- fixed tilting sign.

A Plains Midstream representative provided these photos on 1 October 2015.

This notice reflects the observations of non-compliance with regulatory requirements or company commitments, made by the inspection officer during the compliance verification activity. If the corrective actions identified are implemented by the completion date, the matter is considered resolved. Any unresolved compliance matters will be addressed by the inspection officer and may be referred to NEB enforcement staff.

517 Tenth Avenue SW Calgary, Alberta  T2R 0A8
Telephone  : 403-292-4800   Toll Free  : 1-800-899-1265

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