PHMSA gives nod to Silvertip restart

Sept. 26, 2011 at 10:29 AM
| License Photo

WASHINGTON, Sept. 26 (UPI) -- U.S. regulators said they were still determining if Exxon Mobil violated safety regulations but gave the nod to restart the company's Silvertip pipeline.

Around 1,200 barrels of oil spilled from Exxon Mobil's Silvertip pipeline into the Yellowstone River near Billings, Mont., in early July. Flooding slowed cleanup efforts and teams were sent in to remove debris soaked with oil after water levels dropped.

The U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration said it approved of the energy company's return-to-service plan, which allows Exxon to restart operations on Silvertip.

"PHMSA has performed an extensive review of information and monitored the repairs made by Exxon Mobil to ensure the full line's ability to resume service in a safe and environmentally sound manner," the regulator said in a statement.

The PHMSA added it was still determining whether Exxon broke safety regulations during the days leading up to the July 1 failure on the pipeline.

Silvertip had carried oil from tar sands projects in Canada since the 1980s but that type of oil wasn't at the site of July spill.

Like Us on Facebook for more stories from UPI.com  
Related UPI Stories
Latest Headlines
Top Stories
Compact cannon for British armored vehicles
Ford recalls 432,000 North American vehicles over software bug
Aetna to acquire Humana for $37 billion in cash, stocks
New Zealand military receives medium heavy military trucks
BBC to lay off 1,000 people to make up for $234M in lost revenue