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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation P-95-013
Details
Synopsis: ABOUT 11:55 ON 3/23/94, A 36-INCH DIAMETER PIPELINE OWNED & OPERATED BY TEXAS EASTERN TRANSMISSION CORPORTION (TETCO) RUPTURED CATASTROPHICALLY IN EDISON TOWNSHIP, NEW JERSEY, WITHIN AN ASPHALT PLANT COMPOUND. THE FORCE OF THE RUPTURE & OF NATURAL GAS ESCAPING AT A PRESSURE OF ABOUT 970 PSIG (POUNDS PER SQUARE INCH GUAGE) EXCAVATED THE SOIL AROUND THE PIPE & BLEW GAS HUNDREDS OF FEET INTO THE AIR, PROPELLING PIPE FRAGMENTS, ROCKS, & DEBRIS MORE THAN 800 FEET. WITHIN 1 TO 2 MINUTES OF THE RUPTURE, ONE OF SEVERAL POSSIBLE SOURCES IGNITED THE ESCAPING GAS, SENDING FLAMES UPWARD 400 TO 500 FEET IN THE AIR. HEAT RADIATING FROM THE MASSIVE FIRE IGNITED THE ROOFS OF SEVERAL BUILDING ROOFS IN A NEARBY APARTMENT COMPLEX. OCCUPANTS, ALERTED TO THE EMERGENCY BY NOISES FROM ESCAPING GAS & ROCKS HITTING THE ROOFS, FLED FROM THE BURNING BUILDINGS. APPROXIMATELY 1,500 APARTMENT RESIDENTS WERE EVACUATED. MIRACULOUSLY, NO DEATHS DIRECTLY RESULTED FROM THE RUPTURE & RESULTING FIRE. MOST INJURIES WERE MINOR FOOT BURNS & CUTS THAT THE APARTMENT RESIDENTS SUSTAINED FROM THE HOT PAVEMENT & GLASS SHARDS AS THEY FLED THE COMPLEX. DAMAGE FROM THE ACCIDENT EXCEEDED &25 MILLION.
Recommendation: THE NTSB RECOMMENDS THAT THE ASSOCIATION OF OIL PIPELINES: ENCOURAGE YOUR MEMBERS TO DEVELOP PROGRAMS, WHICH INCLUDE THE MODIFICATION OF EXISTING VALVES FOR REMOTE OR AUTOMATIC OPERATION, THAT WILL REDUCE TO A MINIMUM THE TIME REQUIRED TO STOP THE FLOW OF NATURAL GAS OR HAZARDOUS LIQUIDS TO FAILED PIPELINE SEGMENTS, ESPECIALLY THOSE SEGMENTS IN URBAN OR ENVIRONMENTALLY SENSITIVE LOCATIONS.
Original recommendation transmittal letter: PDF
Overall Status: Closed - Acceptable Action
Mode: Pipeline
Location: Edison, NJ, United States
Is Reiterated: No
Is Hazmat: No
Is NPRM: No
Accident #: DCA94MP001
Accident Reports:
Texas Eastern Transmission Corporation Natural Gas Pipeline Explosion and Fire
Report #: PAR-95-01
Accident Date: 3/23/1994
Issue Date: 2/7/1995
Date Closed: 6/5/2001
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: Association of Oil Pipe Lines (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Remote Operated Valves

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: Association of Oil Pipe Lines
Date: 6/5/2001
Response: The AOPL satisfied the intent of Safety Recommendations P-95-12 and -13 on March 15, 1995, by sending its Periodic Report No. 95-l to all AOPL members. This report addressed the dissemination of pipeline safety precautions. Accordingly, Safety Recommendations P-95-12 and -13 are both classified “Closed--Acceptable Action.”

From: Association of Oil Pipe Lines
To: NTSB
Date: 3/26/2001
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 03/29/2001 4:55:28 PM MC# 2010274 On March 15, 1995, the AOPL sent Periodic Report No. 95-l to all AOPL Members. Page 4 of that report stated as follows: The NTSB recently issued its report on the gas pipeline explosion occurring last year in Edison, New Jersey. The report included a number of recommendations, including two addressed to AOPL. The NTSB then followed up with the attached letter, asking AOPL : “encourage its members to: modify the information in the annual mailings of their public education pipeline safety program to encourage recipients to disseminate the pipeline safety precautions to their tenants and employees who reside and work on property adjacent to high-pressure pipelines develop programs, which include the modification of existing valves for remote or automatic operation, that will reduce to a minimum the time required to stop the flow of natural gas or hazardous liquid to failed pipeline segments, especially those segments in urban or environmentally sensitive locations. Seepage 3. AOPL also attached a copy of the NTSB letter to the Periodic Report. A copy of the pertinent portions of the March 15, 1995 mailing is attached.

From: NTSB
To: Association of Oil Pipe Lines
Date: 3/12/2001
Response: To date, the Safety Board has received no response from AOPL regarding any of these recommendations. The Board would appreciate learning what action, if any, has been taken to implement Safety Recommen-dations P-95-12 and -13, P-96-23, and P-99-7. Copies of the recommendation letters are enclosed.