In This Issue

MMS Safety Alert on Pipeline Safety Joints

On February 24, 2003, the Minerals Management Service issued Safety Alert No. 211 concerning Pipeline Safety Joints. The text of the alert is contained below:

Hurricane Lili and Tropical Storm Isidore recently swept through the Gulf of Mexico, damaging several pipelines. Mudslides occurred in the West Delta and South Pass areas as a result of the storms. The pipeline in the West Delta mudslide area that was equipped with safety joints experienced separation as a result of the mudslide that precipitated from the storms. Pipeline spillage was minimal or non-existent as a result of the activation of the check valves on the safety joint and other design measures.

The Minerals Management Service (MMS) requires that pipelines and related equipment on the U.S. Outer Continental Shelf be designed for efficiency, environmental protection, and operational safety. The intent of this Safety Alert is to remind lessees, right-of-way holders, contractors, and others in the offshore oil and gas industry that the use of safety joints in combination with other appropriate design measures on pipelines traversing designated mudslide areas is a proven method in pipeline spill prevention.

For additional information, contact: Elizabeth Komiskey at (504) 736-2418.