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Safety Recommendation Details

Safety Recommendation P-95-015
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 AMERICAN PEROLEUM INSTITUTE: 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, ESCPECIALLY 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: 2/4/2002
Addressee(s) and Addressee Status: American Petroleum Institute (Closed - Acceptable Action)
Keyword(s): Remote Operated Valves

Safety Recommendation History
From: NTSB
To: American Petroleum Institute
Date: 2/4/2002
Response: With respect to P-95-15, the Safety Board appreciates the extensive discussion of API's support for the Office of Pipeline Safety's requirements for company-based integrity management programs and increased inspections for pipelines that are in or could affect high consequence areas, including urban and environmentally sensitive areas. As operators prepare integrity management plans, the pipeline safety regulations now require that if an operator determines that an emergency flow restricting device (EFRD) is needed to protect a high consequence area in the event of a release, then the operator must install the EFRD. The API's support for this rulemaking is responsive to the goal of the Board's recommendation. Consequently, Safety Recommendation P-95-15 is now classified "Closed--Acceptable Action."

From: American Petroleum Institute
To: NTSB
Date: 6/8/2001
Response: Letter Mail Controlled 06/08/2001 7:37:07 PM MC# 2010482

From: NTSB
To: American Petroleum Institute
Date: 7/17/2000
Response: P-95-15 IS CURRENTLY CLASSIFIED "OPEN--ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE." ENCLOSED ARE COPIES OF THE ORIGINAL RECOMMENDATION LETTERS FOR P-80-15, P-81-20, P-93-20, P-95-14, P-95-15, P-96-22, AND P-98-29, AS WELL AS SUBSEQUENT CORRESPONDENCE RELATED TO THESE RECOMMENDATIONS. THE SAFETY BOARD LOOKS FORWARD TO RECEIVING INFORMATION FROM YOU UPDATING THE ABOVE RECOMMENDATIONS.

From: NTSB
To: American Petroleum Institute
Date: 3/20/1997
Response: After its investigation of the March 1994 catastrophic pipeline rupture in Edison Township, New Jersey, the Safety Board in Sa.fety Recommendation P-95-14 asked the API to 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. The Safety Board is pleased to learn that the API has notified its member companies of the recommended action, will publish the suggestion that pipeline companies distribute public safety right-of-way mailings to apartment building tenants in addition to building owners, and plans to recommend to members who have a pipeline right-of-way adjacent to a workplace to modify informational brochures for posting by business owners to provide employee safety precautions. Pending implementation of the planned actions, the Safety Board has classified Safety Recommendation P-95-14 “Open--Acceptable :Response.” The Safety Board would appreciate receiving copies of the information the API will distribute to its membership concerning these actions.

From: American Petroleum Institute
To: NTSB
Date: 8/5/1996
Response: The American Petroleum Institute is pleased to respond to your request on API activities related to eight open safety recommendations from the National Transportation Safety Board. A description of our activities related to each recommendation and a request that the recommendations be closed based on those activities is enclosed.