March 2014, Vol. 241 No. 3


Remote Pipeline Monitoring: Reducing Risk Of Third-Party Damage

On July 30, 2004, a natural gas pipeline operating at a pressure of 70 bar ruptured. The accident occurred at Ghislenghien industrial park, near Ath, Belgium about 30 miles southwest of Brussels, Belgium. Twenty-four people died as a result of the explosion and subsequent fire (mostly firefighters and the police), and 120-plus were hospitalized, most with severe burns. The pipeline was one of a pair that ran from Zeebrugge, on the North Sea coast to the French border. At the location of the rupture it passed under a factory car park where construction work by a third party had been going on. Third-party damage to underground pipelines continues to be a source of danger to worker

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