Wednesday, June 1, 2011

TransCanada shuts Keystone Pipeline after leak at Kansas pump station

CALGARY, Alta. - Calgary-based TransCanada shut the 591,000 barrel-a-day Keystone pipeline on May 28 after a "an issue with a fitting" caused a 10- to 40-barrel oil leak at a pump station in Kansas, according to an e-mailed statement from Terry Cunha, a company spokesman. There was no fault on the pipeline itself, he said.

The 591,000-b/d line was shut down over the weekend after a half-inch fitting broke, at the Severance, Kansas, pumping station, the Calgary-based company said on May 31.

"The team is putting together a restart plan and they’re hoping to get the system up and running as soon as possible but it will probably be a few days,”"spokesman Terry Cunha said.

Keystone, which started operations in June 2010, has had 11 such breaks along its line at pumping stations on the United States side of the system. The most recent occurred May 7, when a fitting broke at a North Dakota pumping station spilling about 500 barrels of oil at the pump station and into a neighboring field. In that case, Keystone was shut down for six days while TransCanada replaced similar fittings at 47 pumping stations.

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