Gas Pipeline Leak what caused it.
These gas pipeline is not an ordinary gas pipe but filled with live pressurised hydrocarbon or methane gas of which normally used for cooking. The owner of the facilities is Petronas a state owned Oil and Gas company.
For this case it is a feed gas to MLNG(Malaysian Liquefied Natural gas plant) in Bintulu to be converted into LNG or liquid natural gas for export.
The pipeline is a 36 inch x 521 KM with associated receivers, blow stations, transmission system and so on. Built and completed in 2014 by an Indian company consortium Punj Lloyd in 2008.
The pipes passed through hill and mountain slopes , swamps and crossed many rivers and stream.
The place of occurrence happened to be one of the steepest slope.
During this period there was heavy torrential rain. The slope soil become loose soil and gave way (land slide) .
The land slide dragged part of the pipe and damaged the weakest welding joint breaking it up and the gas leaked causing explosion and fire.
No workers on site because it happen at night. The next day all the news break out in national TV and local news papers. See below…
Excerpt from the edgemarket.com:
There was an explosion on Sunday (12th Jan 2020) on the Sabah-Sarawak Gas Pipeline in East Malaysia but the situation is now under control, a fire and rescue department official said on Monday.
“The explosion is still under investigation. Due to communication problems and the remoteness (of the site), our team was late in relaying information to our system.
But Petronas’ ERT (emergency response team) brought the explosion and a small fire under control,” Sarawak state department director Khirudin Drahman told Reuters.
State-owned energy company Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) operates the 500-kilometre-long pipeline. The explosion occurred in the northern district of Marudi.
Petronas did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
It is not clear if Petronas halted operations of the pipeline, which carries gas from the Kebabangan gas field in Sabah state to Bintulu in Sarawak where Petronas operates one of the world’s largest liquefied natural gas (LNG) production facilities.
Petronas last shut down the pipeline in May for maintenance.
Petronas is the sole manager of Malaysia’s oil and gas reserves. Malaysia is the world’s third-biggest LNG exporter after Qatar and Australia.
EXCERPT from the Star.
MIRI: An explosion occurred along a section of the RM4bil Sarawak-Sabah interstate gas pipeline located in the remote jungles of Baram early Monday (Jan 13).
The pre-dawn incident happened not far from Long Kawa, a Penan settlement located in the Telang Usan state constituency, about eight hours by timber road from here, sources told The Star.
Telang Usan state assemblyman Dennis Ngau confirmed the case.
“Yes, apparently there was a loud explosion heard at the pipeline section near Long Kawa.
“I am not sure yet what was the cause. Petronas technicians are on the way there to find out the latest situation.
“A senior Petronas officer told me this morning that there are no injuries,” he said
The Star learnt that the Sarawak Fire and Rescue Department have also deployed a team to the site.
This latest case is the fourth such explosion/fire incident along the Sarawak side of the trans-boundary pipeline.
On May 8 last year, a fire occurred at the pipeline near the remote Long Segemang village in Lawas district in north Sarawak.
The fire did not result in an explosion or injuries to anyone.
Long Lawa and Long Segemang are among the many villages where the gas pipeline snakes through, from its starting point in Kimanis, Sabah to Bintulu, Sarawak.
On Jan 10,2018, there was another explosion along the section of the giant pipeline near the Long Luping settlement, adjacent to the Sarawak-Sabah border.
After Long Luping, there are populated settlements of Long Semadoh and Long Sukang and then the Lawas hinterland where the pipe connects to Baram on the way to Miri and Bintulu.
The pipeline is to channel gas from Kimanis in interior Sabah to Bintulu port in northern Sarawak for processing and export.
The entire length of the pipeline snaking through the rural frontiers is 600km long.
The first explosion at another location for the same gas pipeline was on June 11,2014, in the hills of Lawas district when a leak happened at a section of the pipeline passing through a farm causing a deep hole and burnt many plant on the spot.
Oil And Gas Training.
To operate and maintain any oil and gas facilities all personnel must be competent in operation, maintenance, safety, and management. Must be competent with certified body via or through a training institute verified at least by the state.
No one was injured in that 2014 explosion.