Monday, June 29, 2009

Defective pipe slows Boardwalk operations

HOUSTON – A few defective pipe joints are reportedly slowing operation of the Boardwalk pipeline system.
Boardwalk is reportedly engaged in the ongoing replacement of several sections of pipe in new projects that were determined to have anomalies following hydrostatic tests.
The problem of slight expansions of the pipe occurred in less than one percent of Boardwalk's new pipe joints, but was spread throughout the new projects.
The anomalies made necessary reduction in operating pressure and also shutting down sections for temporary intervals to replace affected segments.
As a result, revenues and cash flows are considerably lower than anticipated. Boardwalk has been working with the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and expects to obtain permission to increase pressure to the normal operating level of 72 percent of SMYS in each project following the replacement of the defective sections. PHMSA will then decide about granting Boardwalk a waiver to operate at the increased 80 percent operating pressure as originally planned.

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