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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.

National All Pipeline Systems: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number (C) % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 33 12.3% 1 4 $25,910,036 17.8%
INTERNAL CORROSION 31 11.5% 0 0 $9,882,510 6.7%
UNSPECIFIED CORROSION 1 0.3% 0 0 $27,740 0.0%
Sub Total 65 24.2% 1 4 $35,820,287 24.6%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 11 4.1% 1 2 $7,268,849 4.9%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 45 16.7% 3 8 $18,280,620 12.5%
Sub Total 56 20.9% 4 10 $25,549,469 17.5%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 13 4.8% 2 2 $4,406,066 3.0%
Sub Total 13 4.8% 2 2 $4,406,066 3.0%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 2 0.7% 0 0 $2,718,539 1.8%
BODY OF PIPE 8 2.9% 2 0 $6,529,393 4.4%
PIPE SEAM 8 2.9% 2 7 $16,531,728 11.3%
BUTT WELD 9 3.3% 0 0 $6,291,951 4.3%
FILLET WELD 2 0.7% 0 0 $311,316 0.2%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 13 4.8% 0 0 $4,962,456 3.4%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 9 3.3% 0 0 $827,842 0.5%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 3 1.1% 0 1 $1,680,713 1.1%
NON-THREADED CONNECTION FAILURE 5 1.8% 0 0 $840,017 0.5%
Sub Total 59 22.0% 4 8 $40,693,959 27.9%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 7 2.6% 0 3 $2,072,797 1.4%
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 3 1.1% 0 0 $286,228 0.2%
LIGHTNING 5 1.8% 0 0 $670,743 0.4%
TEMPERATURE 3 1.1% 0 0 $171,034 0.1%
HIGH WINDS 1 0.3% 0 0 $1,767,425 1.2%
Sub Total 19 7.0% 0 3 $4,968,228 3.4%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
FIRE/EXPLOSION AS PRIMARY CAUSE 2 0.7% 0 0 $162,758 0.1%
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 11 4.1% 2 2 $14,785,230 10.1%
PREVIOUS MECHANICAL DAMAGE 1 0.3% 0 1 $819,539 0.5%
INTENTIONAL DAMAGE 2 0.7% 0 1 $240,214 0.1%
Sub Total 16 5.9% 2 4 $16,007,743 11.0%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 21 7.8% 0 5 $11,057,442 7.6%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 18 6.7% 2 11 $7,060,060 4.8%
UNSPECIFIED 1 0.3% 0 0 $138 0.0%
Sub Total 40 14.9% 2 16 $18,117,641 12.4%
Totals 268 100.0% 15 47 $145,563,396 100.0%
National, All Pipeline Systems, 2007
National Hazardous Liquid: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 16 14.6% 0 0 $6,207,049 9.8%
INTERNAL CORROSION 10 9.1% 0 0 $1,687,920 2.6%
UNSPECIFIED CORROSION 1 0.9% 0 0 $27,740 0.0%
Sub Total 27 24.7% 0 0 $7,922,710 12.5%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 6 5.5% 0 0 $6,566,583 10.4%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 11 10.0% 0 2 $10,388,790 16.4%
Sub Total 17 15.6% 0 2 $16,955,374 26.8%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 10 9.1% 2 0 $4,167,417 6.6%
Sub Total 10 9.1% 2 0 $4,167,417 6.6%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 1 0.9% 0 0 $1,850,049 2.9%
BODY OF PIPE 4 3.6% 0 0 $5,508,046 8.7%
PIPE SEAM 7 6.4% 2 7 $16,375,222 25.9%
BUTT WELD 4 3.6% 0 0 $483,348 0.7%
FILLET WELD 1 0.9% 0 0 $146,575 0.2%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 6 5.5% 0 0 $3,490,148 5.5%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 6 5.5% 0 0 $538,426 0.8%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 1 0.9% 0 0 $1,613,041 2.5%
NON-THREADED CONNECTION FAILURE 5 4.5% 0 0 $840,017 1.3%
Sub Total 35 32.1% 2 7 $30,844,877 48.8%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 1 0.9% 0 0 $158,078 0.2%
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 3 2.7% 0 0 $286,228 0.4%
LIGHTNING 3 2.7% 0 0 $66,055 0.1%
TEMPERATURE 2 1.8% 0 0 $60,951 0.1%
Sub Total 9 8.2% 0 0 $571,313 0.9%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
FIRE/EXPLOSION AS PRIMARY CAUSE 2 1.8% 0 0 $162,758 0.2%
INTENTIONAL DAMAGE 2 1.8% 0 1 $240,214 0.3%
Sub Total 4 3.6% 0 1 $402,973 0.6%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 4 3.6% 0 0 $1,469,971 2.3%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 2 1.8% 0 0 $774,399 1.2%
UNSPECIFIED 1 0.9% 0 0 $138 0.0%
Sub Total 7 6.4% 0 0 $2,244,510 3.5%
Totals 109 100.0% 4 10 $63,109,176 100.0%
National, Hazardous Liquid, 2007
National Hazardous Liquid Onshore: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 15 13.7% 0 0 $6,078,249 9.6%
INTERNAL CORROSION 10 9.1% 0 0 $1,687,920 2.6%
UNSPECIFIED CORROSION 1 0.9% 0 0 $27,740 0.0%
Sub Total 26 23.8% 0 0 $7,793,910 12.3%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 6 5.5% 0 0 $6,566,583 10.4%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 11 10.0% 0 2 $10,388,790 16.4%
Sub Total 17 15.6% 0 2 $16,955,374 26.8%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 10 9.1% 2 0 $4,167,417 6.6%
Sub Total 10 9.1% 2 0 $4,167,417 6.6%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 1 0.9% 0 0 $1,850,049 2.9%
BODY OF PIPE 4 3.6% 0 0 $5,508,046 8.7%
PIPE SEAM 7 6.4% 2 7 $16,375,222 25.9%
BUTT WELD 4 3.6% 0 0 $483,348 0.7%
FILLET WELD 1 0.9% 0 0 $146,575 0.2%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 6 5.5% 0 0 $3,490,148 5.5%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 6 5.5% 0 0 $538,426 0.8%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 1 0.9% 0 0 $1,613,041 2.5%
NON-THREADED CONNECTION FAILURE 5 4.5% 0 0 $840,017 1.3%
Sub Total 35 32.1% 2 7 $30,844,877 48.8%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 1 0.9% 0 0 $158,078 0.2%
HEAVY RAINS/FLOODS 3 2.7% 0 0 $286,228 0.4%
LIGHTNING 3 2.7% 0 0 $66,055 0.1%
TEMPERATURE 2 1.8% 0 0 $60,951 0.1%
Sub Total 9 8.2% 0 0 $571,313 0.9%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
FIRE/EXPLOSION AS PRIMARY CAUSE 2 1.8% 0 0 $162,758 0.2%
INTENTIONAL DAMAGE 2 1.8% 0 1 $240,214 0.3%
Sub Total 4 3.6% 0 1 $402,973 0.6%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 3 2.7% 0 0 $743,140 1.1%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 2 1.8% 0 0 $774,399 1.2%
UNSPECIFIED 1 0.9% 0 0 $138 0.0%
Sub Total 6 5.5% 0 0 $1,517,679 2.4%
Totals 107 98.1% 4 10 $62,253,545 98.6%
National, Hazardous Liquid Onshore, 2007
National Hazardous Liquid Offshore: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 1 0.9% 0 0 $128,800 0.2%
Sub Total 1 0.9% 0 0 $128,800 0.2%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 1 0.9% 0 0 $726,830 1.1%
Sub Total 1 0.9% 0 0 $726,830 1.1%
Totals 2 1.8% 0 0 $855,630 1.3%
National, Hazardous Liquid Offshore, 2007
National Gas Transmission: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 16 21.0% 1 2 $19,617,075 34.2%
INTERNAL CORROSION 13 17.1% 0 0 $5,857,204 10.2%
Sub Total 29 38.1% 1 2 $25,474,280 44.5%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 2 2.6% 0 1 $144,242 0.2%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 8 10.5% 1 0 $1,337,093 2.3%
Sub Total 10 13.1% 1 1 $1,481,335 2.5%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 2 2.6% 0 1 $128,566 0.2%
Sub Total 2 2.6% 0 1 $128,566 0.2%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 1 1.3% 0 0 $868,489 1.5%
BODY OF PIPE 1 1.3% 0 0 $121,301 0.2%
PIPE SEAM 1 1.3% 0 0 $156,506 0.2%
BUTT WELD 5 6.5% 0 0 $5,808,602 10.1%
FILLET WELD 1 1.3% 0 0 $164,741 0.2%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 4 5.2% 0 0 $560,553 0.9%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 1 1.3% 0 0 $71,764 0.1%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 1 1.3% 0 0 $63,990 0.1%
Sub Total 15 19.7% 0 0 $7,815,949 13.6%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 2 2.6% 0 0 $1,140,866 1.9%
LIGHTNING 1 1.3% 0 0 $438,463 0.7%
Sub Total 3 3.9% 0 0 $1,579,330 2.7%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 3 3.9% 0 0 $13,319,584 23.2%
PREVIOUS MECHANICAL DAMAGE 1 1.3% 0 1 $819,539 1.4%
Sub Total 4 5.2% 0 1 $14,139,124 24.7%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 10 13.1% 0 2 $5,548,690 9.7%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 3 3.9% 0 0 $1,038,251 1.8%
Sub Total 13 17.1% 0 2 $6,586,941 11.5%
Totals 76 100.0% 2 7 $57,205,528 100.0%
National, Gas Transmission, 2007
National Gas Transmission Onshore: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 16 21.0% 1 2 $19,617,075 34.2%
INTERNAL CORROSION 4 5.2% 0 0 $2,377,331 4.1%
Sub Total 20 26.3% 1 2 $21,994,407 38.4%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 2 2.6% 0 1 $144,242 0.2%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 8 10.5% 1 0 $1,337,093 2.3%
Sub Total 10 13.1% 1 1 $1,481,335 2.5%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 2 2.6% 0 1 $128,566 0.2%
Sub Total 2 2.6% 0 1 $128,566 0.2%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
ENVIRONMENTAL CRACKING-RELATED 1 1.3% 0 0 $868,489 1.5%
BODY OF PIPE 1 1.3% 0 0 $121,301 0.2%
PIPE SEAM 1 1.3% 0 0 $156,506 0.2%
BUTT WELD 4 5.2% 0 0 $5,255,807 9.1%
FILLET WELD 1 1.3% 0 0 $164,741 0.2%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 1 1.3% 0 0 $91,775 0.1%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 1 1.3% 0 0 $71,764 0.1%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 1 1.3% 0 0 $63,990 0.1%
Sub Total 11 14.4% 0 0 $6,794,377 11.8%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 2 2.6% 0 0 $1,140,866 1.9%
LIGHTNING 1 1.3% 0 0 $438,463 0.7%
Sub Total 3 3.9% 0 0 $1,579,330 2.7%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
PREVIOUS MECHANICAL DAMAGE 1 1.3% 0 1 $819,539 1.4%
Sub Total 1 1.3% 0 1 $819,539 1.4%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 9 11.8% 0 2 $4,448,391 7.7%
Sub Total 9 11.8% 0 2 $4,448,391 7.7%
Totals 56 73.6% 2 7 $37,245,948 65.1%
National, Gas Transmission Onshore, 2007
National Gas Transmission Offshore: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
INTERNAL CORROSION 9 11.8% 0 0 $3,479,872 6.0%
Sub Total 9 11.8% 0 0 $3,479,872 6.0%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
BUTT WELD 1 1.3% 0 0 $552,794 0.9%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 3 3.9% 0 0 $468,777 0.8%
Sub Total 4 5.2% 0 0 $1,021,572 1.7%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 3 3.9% 0 0 $13,319,584 23.2%
Sub Total 3 3.9% 0 0 $13,319,584 23.2%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 1 1.3% 0 0 $1,100,299 1.9%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 3 3.9% 0 0 $1,038,251 1.8%
Sub Total 4 5.2% 0 0 $2,138,550 3.7%
Totals 20 26.3% 0 0 $19,959,580 34.8%
National, Gas Transmission Offshore, 2007
National Gas Gathering: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
INTERNAL CORROSION 8 80.0% 0 0 $2,337,385 39.9%
Sub Total 8 80.0% 0 0 $2,337,385 39.9%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 1 10.0% 0 0 $305,717 5.2%
Sub Total 1 10.0% 0 0 $305,717 5.2%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 1 10.0% 0 0 $3,211,448 54.8%
Sub Total 1 10.0% 0 0 $3,211,448 54.8%
Totals 10 100.0% 0 0 $5,854,552 100.0%
National, Gas Gathering, 2007
National Gas Distribution: Significant Incident Details: 2007
Reported Cause of Incident (B) Number (C) % Fatalities Injuries Property Damage (D) (E) % of Property Damage
CORROSION
EXTERNAL CORROSION 1 1.3% 0 2 $85,911 0.4%
Sub Total 1 1.3% 0 2 $85,911 0.4%
EXCAVATION DAMAGE
OPERATOR/CONTRACTOR EXCAVATION DAMAGE 3 4.1% 1 1 $558,022 2.8%
THIRD PARTY EXCAVATION DAMAGE 26 35.6% 2 6 $6,554,736 33.8%
Sub Total 29 39.7% 3 7 $7,112,759 36.6%
INCORRECT OPERATION
UNSPECIFIED INCORRECT OPERATION 1 1.3% 0 1 $110,082 0.5%
Sub Total 1 1.3% 0 1 $110,082 0.5%
MAT'L/WELD/EQUIP FAILURE
BODY OF PIPE 3 4.1% 2 0 $900,045 4.6%
JOINT/FITTING/COMPONENT 2 2.7% 0 0 $606,036 3.1%
MALFUNCTION OF CONTROL/RELIEF EQUIPMENT 2 2.7% 0 0 $217,651 1.1%
THREADED CONNECTION/COUPLING FAILURE 1 1.3% 0 1 $3,681 0.0%
Sub Total 8 10.9% 2 1 $1,727,414 8.9%
NATURAL FORCE DAMAGE
EARTH MOVEMENT 4 5.4% 0 3 $773,851 3.9%
LIGHTNING 1 1.3% 0 0 $166,224 0.8%
TEMPERATURE 1 1.3% 0 0 $110,082 0.5%
HIGH WINDS 1 1.3% 0 0 $1,767,425 9.1%
Sub Total 7 9.5% 0 3 $2,817,584 14.5%
OTHER OUTSIDE FORCE DAMAGE
VEHICLE NOT ENGAGED IN EXCAVATION 8 10.9% 2 2 $1,465,645 7.5%
Sub Total 8 10.9% 2 2 $1,465,645 7.5%
ALL OTHER CAUSES
MISCELLANEOUS CAUSE 6 8.2% 0 3 $827,331 4.2%
UNKNOWN CAUSE 13 17.8% 2 11 $5,247,409 27.0%
Sub Total 19 26.0% 2 14 $6,074,741 31.3%
Totals 73 100.0% 9 30 $19,394,140 100.0%
National, Gas Distribution, 2007

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 - Sept 3, 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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