PHMSA Proposes $1.6 Million in Civil Penalties for Safety Violations to Williams Partners

PHMSA on Friday proposed $1.6 million in civil penalties and issued a Notice of Probable Violation (NOPV) and a Proposed Compliance Order to Transcontinental Pipeline Company (Transco), a subsidiary of Williams Partners, for violating Federal pipeline safety regulations.

PHMSA’s actions are a result of the October 8, 2015 incident during which four Transco employees died due to a series of explosions and a fire at the Louisiana Compressor Station near Bayou Black.

After investigating the cause of the October incident, PHMSA found five alleged instances of noncompliance with Federal pipeline safety standards. These instances include the failure to report all significant facts when reporting the incident to the National Response Center and performing welding on pipeline components that contain a combustible mixture of gas and air.

PHMSA incorporated remedial actions into the Proposed Compliance Order that correspond to each alleged violation in order to ensure compliance with regulations and to improve safety. See the NOPV and Proposed Compliance Order here.

The Transco Compressor Station 62 facility is located between Gibson and Houma, Louisiana where it receives unprocessed natural gas via pipelines from offshore producers in the Gulf of Mexico.