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Significant Pipeline Incidents By Cause

This report is a sub-report of the PHMSA Significant Pipeline Incidents report. As such, it represents Significant Incidents (A) only over the time period and pipeline system specified.

The data source for this table is the PHMSA Flagged Incident File. (1)

More Pipeline Incidents Reports are available.

Transition Notice: Effective October 1, 2014, please visit our new website at http://www.phmsa.dot.gov/pipeline/library/datastatistics/pipelineincidenttrends for Pipeline Incident and Mileage Data. This new website will better serve you and provides a single point of access to pipeline data. Please note that the data has been migrated to the new website already; however, you can continue to access the data on this website until October 31, 2014. After this date, you will be redirected to the new website. We apologize for any inconvenience to you during this transition period. If you have questions or feedback, please contact PHMSAPHPDataandStatistics@dot.gov.
National All Pipeline Systems: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number (C) % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 32 10.3% 1 14 $50,658,924 16.4%
INTERNAL CORROSION 28 9.0% 0 0 $8,408,319 2.7%
UNSPECIFIED CORROSION 1 0.3% 0 0 $206,455 0.0%
Sub Total 61 19.6% 1 14 $59,273,700 19.2%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 7 2.2% 0 1 $1,598,700 0.5%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 62 20.0% 6 9 $22,971,630 7.4%
Sub Total 69 22.2% 6 10 $24,570,331 7.9%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 13 4.1% 2 9 $1,455,008 0.4%
Sub Total 13 4.1% 2 9 $1,455,008 0.4%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 5 1.6% 0 0 $5,321,087 1.7%
BODY OF PIPE 6 1.9% 0 0 $2,567,623 0.8%
PIPE SEAM 2 0.6% 0 0 $331,598 0.1%
BUTT WELD 3 0.9% 0 0 $245,657 0.0%
FILLET WELD 3 0.9% 0 0 $508,059 0.1%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 19 6.1% 2 3 $19,008,132 6.1%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 15 4.8% 0 0 $1,238,089 0.4%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 5 1.6% 0 1 $242,699 0.0%
NON-THREADED CONNECTION FAILURE 8 2.5% 0 0 $1,350,142 0.4%
UNSPECIFIED MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE 3 0.9% 0 0 $1,007,658 0.3%
Sub Total 69 22.2% 2 4 $31,820,749 10.3%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 10 3.2% 0 2 $70,871,774 23.0%
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 16 5.1% 0 1 $22,466,148 7.2%
LIGHTNING 3 0.9% 0 0 $3,276,217 1.0%
TEMPERATURE 7 2.2% 3 4 $1,104,417 0.3%
HIGH WINDS 7 2.2% 0 0 $68,260,893 22.1%
Sub Total 43 13.8% 3 7 $165,979,452 53.8%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
FIRE/EXPLOSION AS PRIMARY CAUSE 1 0.3% 0 0 $1,174,225 0.3%
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 16 5.1% 1 2 $11,350,897 3.6%
PREVIOUS MECHANICAL DAMAGE 2 0.6% 0 0 $3,209,003 1.0%
INTENTIONAL DAMAGE 2 0.6% 0 0 $907,495 0.2%
UNSPECIFIED OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE 4 1.2% 0 0 $2,051,520 0.6%
Sub Total 25 8.0% 1 2 $18,693,142 6.0%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 25 8.0% 6 8 $5,661,614 1.8%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 5 1.6% 2 2 $714,809 0.2%
Sub Total 30 9.6% 8 10 $6,376,423 2.0%
Totals 310 100.0% 23 56 $308,168,807 100.0%
National, All Pipeline Systems, 2004
National Hazardous Liquid: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 23 17.0% 0 12 $49,065,975 24.9%
INTERNAL CORROSION 11 8.1% 0 0 $2,665,353 1.3%
UNSPECIFIED CORROSION 1 0.7% 0 0 $206,455 0.1%
Sub Total 35 25.9% 0 12 $51,937,784 26.3%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 6 4.4% 0 0 $1,529,210 0.7%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 17 12.5% 5 3 $8,364,260 4.2%
Sub Total 23 17.0% 5 3 $9,893,470 5.0%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 4 2.9% 0 0 $135,714 0.0%
Sub Total 4 2.9% 0 0 $135,714 0.0%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 2 1.4% 0 0 $4,649,033 2.3%
BODY OF PIPE 1 0.7% 0 0 $1,272,853 0.6%
PIPE SEAM 2 1.4% 0 0 $331,598 0.1%
BUTT WELD 2 1.4% 0 0 $155,256 0.0%
FILLET WELD 2 1.4% 0 0 $216,013 0.1%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 12 8.8% 0 1 $16,798,893 8.5%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 8 5.9% 0 0 $266,241 0.1%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 4 2.9% 0 0 $242,578 0.1%
NON-THREADED CONNECTION FAILURE 8 5.9% 0 0 $1,350,142 0.6%
Sub Total 41 30.3% 0 1 $25,282,610 12.8%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 4 2.9% 0 0 $31,075,239 15.7%
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 1 0.7% 0 0 $557,157 0.2%
LIGHTNING 3 2.2% 0 0 $3,276,217 1.6%
TEMPERATURE 2 1.4% 0 0 $479,307 0.2%
HIGH WINDS 7 5.1% 0 0 $68,260,893 34.6%
Sub Total 17 12.5% 0 0 $103,648,816 52.6%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 4 2.9% 0 0 $1,735,654 0.8%
PREVIOUS MECHANICAL DAMAGE 1 0.7% 0 0 $2,587,513 1.3%
INTENTIONAL DAMAGE 1 0.7% 0 0 $774,750 0.3%
Sub Total 6 4.4% 0 0 $5,097,918 2.5%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 8 5.9% 0 0 $692,631 0.3%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 1 0.7% 0 0 $181,057 0.0%
Sub Total 9 6.6% 0 0 $873,689 0.4%
Totals 135 100.0% 5 16 $196,870,003 100.0%
National, Hazardous Liquid, 2004
National Hazardous Liquid Onshore: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 23 17.0% 0 12 $49,065,975 24.9%
INTERNAL CORROSION 11 8.1% 0 0 $2,665,353 1.3%
UNSPECIFIED CORROSION 1 0.7% 0 0 $206,455 0.1%
Sub Total 35 25.9% 0 12 $51,937,784 26.3%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 6 4.4% 0 0 $1,529,210 0.7%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 17 12.5% 5 3 $8,364,260 4.2%
Sub Total 23 17.0% 5 3 $9,893,470 5.0%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 4 2.9% 0 0 $135,714 0.0%
Sub Total 4 2.9% 0 0 $135,714 0.0%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 2 1.4% 0 0 $4,649,033 2.3%
BODY OF PIPE 1 0.7% 0 0 $1,272,853 0.6%
PIPE SEAM 2 1.4% 0 0 $331,598 0.1%
BUTT WELD 2 1.4% 0 0 $155,256 0.0%
FILLET WELD 2 1.4% 0 0 $216,013 0.1%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 11 8.1% 0 1 $2,317,556 1.1%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 8 5.9% 0 0 $266,241 0.1%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 4 2.9% 0 0 $242,578 0.1%
NON-THREADED CONNECTION FAILURE 7 5.1% 0 0 $741,927 0.3%
Sub Total 39 28.8% 0 1 $10,193,058 5.1%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 3 2.2% 0 0 $2,112,361 1.0%
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 1 0.7% 0 0 $557,157 0.2%
LIGHTNING 3 2.2% 0 0 $3,276,217 1.6%
TEMPERATURE 2 1.4% 0 0 $479,307 0.2%
HIGH WINDS 1 0.7% 0 0 $17,652,003 8.9%
Sub Total 10 7.4% 0 0 $24,077,047 12.2%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 3 2.2% 0 0 $528,878 0.2%
PREVIOUS MECHANICAL DAMAGE 1 0.7% 0 0 $2,587,513 1.3%
INTENTIONAL DAMAGE 1 0.7% 0 0 $774,750 0.3%
Sub Total 5 3.7% 0 0 $3,891,142 1.9%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 8 5.9% 0 0 $692,631 0.3%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 1 0.7% 0 0 $181,057 0.0%
Sub Total 9 6.6% 0 0 $873,689 0.4%
Totals 125 92.5% 5 16 $101,001,906 51.3%
National, Hazardous Liquid Onshore, 2004
National Hazardous Liquid Offshore: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 1 0.7% 0 0 $14,481,336 7.3%
NON-THREADED CONNECTION FAILURE 1 0.7% 0 0 $608,215 0.3%
Sub Total 2 1.4% 0 0 $15,089,552 7.6%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 1 0.7% 0 0 $28,962,878 14.7%
HIGH WINDS 6 4.4% 0 0 $50,608,890 25.7%
Sub Total 7 5.1% 0 0 $79,571,768 40.4%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 1 0.7% 0 0 $1,206,776 0.6%
Sub Total 1 0.7% 0 0 $1,206,776 0.6%
Totals 10 7.4% 0 0 $95,868,097 48.7%
National, Hazardous Liquid Offshore, 2004
National Gas Transmission: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 3 4.7% 0 0 $479,677 1.2%
INTERNAL CORROSION 12 19.0% 0 0 $3,787,913 10.1%
Sub Total 15 23.8% 0 0 $4,267,590 11.4%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 1 1.5% 0 1 $69,490 0.1%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 13 20.6% 0 0 $2,250,175 6.0%
Sub Total 14 22.2% 0 1 $2,319,665 6.2%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 1 1.5% 0 0 $97,846 0.2%
Sub Total 1 1.5% 0 0 $97,846 0.2%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 3 4.7% 0 0 $672,054 1.8%
BODY OF PIPE 4 6.3% 0 0 $674,959 1.8%
BUTT WELD 1 1.5% 0 0 $90,401 0.2%
FILLET WELD 1 1.5% 0 0 $292,046 0.7%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 1 1.5% 0 0 $218,929 0.5%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 6 9.5% 0 0 $873,375 2.3%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 1 1.5% 0 1 $120 0.0%
Sub Total 17 26.9% 0 1 $2,821,886 7.5%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 7 11.1% 0 0 $19,230,377 51.5%
Sub Total 7 11.1% 0 0 $19,230,377 51.5%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
FIRE/EXPLOSION AS PRIMARY CAUSE 1 1.5% 0 0 $1,174,225 3.1%
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 4 6.3% 0 0 $6,068,461 16.2%
Sub Total 5 7.9% 0 0 $7,242,686 19.4%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 3 4.7% 0 0 $1,205,738 3.2%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 1 1.5% 0 0 $102,449 0.2%
Sub Total 4 6.3% 0 0 $1,308,188 3.5%
Totals 63 100.0% 0 2 $37,288,242 100.0%
National, Gas Transmission, 2004
National Gas Transmission Onshore: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 2 3.1% 0 0 $345,954 0.9%
INTERNAL CORROSION 1 1.5% 0 0 $118,713 0.3%
Sub Total 3 4.7% 0 0 $464,668 1.2%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 1 1.5% 0 1 $69,490 0.1%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 13 20.6% 0 0 $2,250,175 6.0%
Sub Total 14 22.2% 0 1 $2,319,665 6.2%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 1 1.5% 0 0 $97,846 0.2%
Sub Total 1 1.5% 0 0 $97,846 0.2%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 3 4.7% 0 0 $672,054 1.8%
BODY OF PIPE 4 6.3% 0 0 $674,959 1.8%
BUTT WELD 1 1.5% 0 0 $90,401 0.2%
FILLET WELD 1 1.5% 0 0 $292,046 0.7%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 1 1.5% 0 0 $218,929 0.5%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 6 9.5% 0 0 $873,375 2.3%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 1 1.5% 0 1 $120 0.0%
Sub Total 17 26.9% 0 1 $2,821,886 7.5%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 2 3.1% 0 0 $627,315 1.6%
Sub Total 2 3.1% 0 0 $627,315 1.6%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
FIRE/EXPLOSION AS PRIMARY CAUSE 1 1.5% 0 0 $1,174,225 3.1%
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 2 3.1% 0 0 $255,015 0.6%
Sub Total 3 4.7% 0 0 $1,429,241 3.8%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 3 4.7% 0 0 $1,205,738 3.2%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 1 1.5% 0 0 $102,449 0.2%
Sub Total 4 6.3% 0 0 $1,308,188 3.5%
Totals 44 69.8% 0 2 $9,068,812 24.3%
National, Gas Transmission Onshore, 2004
National Gas Transmission Offshore: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 1 1.5% 0 0 $133,722 0.3%
INTERNAL CORROSION 11 17.4% 0 0 $3,669,199 9.8%
Sub Total 12 19.0% 0 0 $3,802,922 10.2%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 5 7.9% 0 0 $18,603,062 49.8%
Sub Total 5 7.9% 0 0 $18,603,062 49.8%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 2 3.1% 0 0 $5,813,445 15.5%
Sub Total 2 3.1% 0 0 $5,813,445 15.5%
Totals 19 30.1% 0 0 $28,219,430 75.6%
National, Gas Transmission Offshore, 2004
National Gas Gathering: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 1 9.0% 0 0 $103,880 0.2%
INTERNAL CORROSION 5 45.4% 0 0 $1,955,053 5.0%
Sub Total 6 54.5% 0 0 $2,058,934 5.3%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 1 9.0% 0 0 $120,677 0.3%
Sub Total 1 9.0% 0 0 $120,677 0.3%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 1 9.0% 0 1 $24,135 0.0%
Sub Total 1 9.0% 0 1 $24,135 0.0%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 1 9.0% 0 0 $98,472 0.2%
Sub Total 1 9.0% 0 0 $98,472 0.2%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 2 18.1% 0 0 $36,128,144 94.0%
Sub Total 2 18.1% 0 0 $36,128,144 94.0%
Totals 11 100.0% 0 1 $38,430,364 100.0%
National, Gas Gathering, 2004
National Gas Distribution: Significant Incident Details: 2004
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number (C) % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 5 4.9% 1 2 $1,009,391 2.8%
Sub Total 5 4.9% 1 2 $1,009,391 2.8%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 31 30.6% 1 6 $12,236,517 34.3%
Sub Total 31 30.6% 1 6 $12,236,517 34.3%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 7 6.9% 2 8 $1,197,312 3.3%
Sub Total 7 6.9% 2 8 $1,197,312 3.3%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
BODY OF PIPE 1 0.9% 0 0 $619,810 1.7%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 6 5.9% 2 2 $1,990,310 5.5%
UNSPECIFIED MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE 3 2.9% 0 0 $1,007,658 2.8%
Sub Total 10 9.9% 2 2 $3,617,778 10.1%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 4 3.9% 0 2 $3,668,390 10.3%
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 8 7.9% 0 1 $2,678,612 7.5%
TEMPERATURE 5 4.9% 3 4 $625,110 1.7%
Sub Total 17 16.8% 3 7 $6,972,113 19.6%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 8 7.9% 1 2 $3,546,781 9.9%
PREVIOUS MECHANICAL DAMAGE 1 0.9% 0 0 $621,489 1.7%
INTENTIONAL DAMAGE 1 0.9% 0 0 $132,745 0.3%
UNSPECIFIED OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE 4 3.9% 0 0 $2,051,520 5.7%
Sub Total 14 13.8% 1 2 $6,352,536 17.8%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 14 13.8% 6 8 $3,763,244 10.5%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 3 2.9% 2 2 $431,301 1.2%
Sub Total 17 16.8% 8 10 $4,194,545 11.7%
Totals 101 100.0% 18 37 $35,580,196 100.0%
National, Gas Distribution, 2004

Notes

  1. Significant Incidents are those incidents reported by pipeline operators when any of the following conditions are met: 1) Fatality or injury requiring in-patient hospitalization. 2) $50,000 or more in total costs, measured in 1984 dollars. 3) Highly volatile liquid releases of 5 barrels or more or other liquid releases of 50 barrels or more. 4) Liquid releases resulting in an unintentional fire or explosion. Serious incidents, a subset of Significant Incidents, are incidents which involve a fatality or injury requiring in-patient hospitalization.
  2. PHMSA has gathered increasingly targeted incident cause data over time. As such, the available reportable categories of cause (eg: Internal/External Corrosion vs Corrosion in general) have increased over time. This report spans time periods over which the reportable cause categories have changed. The cause categories in this report should be taken as general and not specific for years prior to 2002 for Liquid and Gas Transmission, and prior to 2004 for Gas Distribution.
  3. Gas Distribution incidents where fire/explosion was the primary cause of failure, such as a house fire that subsequently resulted in - but was not caused by - a distribution line failure are excluded from 2004 onward. This exclusion has not been applied in years prior to 2004 due to difficulty in identifying these types of events with the older report formats.
  4. The costs for incidents in 2013 and prior are presented in 2013 dollars. Cost of Gas lost is indexed via the Energy Information Administration, Natural Gas City Gate Prices. All other costs are adjusted via the Bureau of Economic Analysis, Government Printing Office inflation values.
  5. For years 2002 and later, property damage is estimated as the sum of all public and private costs reported in the 30-day incident report. For years prior to 2002, accident report forms did not include a breakdown of public and private costs so property damage for these years is the reported total property damage field in the report.

Sources

  1. PHMSA Flagged Incidents File - Oct 1, 2014. Note: Incidents occurring up to 30 days prior the Incident File source date may not appear in these reports due to the 30-day reporting period allowed by PHMSA regulation.

See Pipeline Incidents Reports for more pipeline safety reports.

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