Alberta finds faults in 2011 oil spill

Feb. 27, 2013 at 7:59 AM

CALGARY, Alberta, Feb. 27 (UPI) -- An energy regulator in Canada said Plains Midstream Canada didn't do enough to respond to a 2011 pipeline failure in Alberta, one of its worst in history.

An April 2011 failure on the Rainbow pipeline in Alberta resulted in the release of about 28,000 barrels of crude oil.

The Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board said Plains faces "high-risk enforcement actions" for its failure to respond adequately to the spill, one of the largest since the 1970s.

An assessment of the incident indicated stress on a crack in a weld on the pipeline contributed to its failure. Plains committed to pulling and inspecting all sections of the pipeline containing the type of welds in question, the ERCB said.

The regulator said Plains didn't have a sufficient leak detection system in place at the time of the spill nor did it test its emergency response plan. The ECRB added that the company's efforts to keep the public informed of the incident were "substandard."

Parent company Plains All American Pipeline was scrutinized in 2006 for a 7,500-barrel leak at a section of the same pipeline in Edmonton. Investigators blamed stress and corrosion for that leak. The pipeline was built in 1966.

The ECRB said the spill was cleaned and the pipeline was restarted without incident Aug. 30, 2011. There was no public response from Plains.

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