CIPS Survey clearance

BPA’s lands team is undertaking a programme of scrub clearance works at more than 60 sites along the route of the buried high-pressure oil pipelines that BPA manages in the UK.

The scrub clearance is in preparation for a new CIPs survey which is scheduled to start in October and run until the end of November 2020.   The work will take place on the LAP pipeline that feeds Heathrow Airport, the buried pipeline that runs between the Thames Pump Station and the Epping Pump Station and also the buried high-pressure oil pipeline that runs between the Blisworth Pump Station and the Oil Storage Terminal at Kingsbury.

A CIPS survey is sometimes referred to as Close Interval Survey, which is an above ground, non-intrusive survey, used to accurately determine the effectiveness of the cathodic protection system along the pipelines.  The survey helps ensure that the integrity of the pipeline remains protected from corrosion.

The pipe-to-soil readings are measured at test points typically installed at 1 to 2 kilometre intervals along the pipeline route, however these measurements do not accurately reflect the pipe-to-soil potentials between test points.

To overcome this, a close interval potential survey (CIPS) is undertaken, with pipe-to-soil potentials measured at nominal 2 metre intervals. The CIPS technique can be employed for both buried (onshore) and immersed (offshore) pipelines.

To allow BPA’s Lands team access to points on the ground above the buried pipelines a programme of scrub clearance is being undertaken at points where readings will be taken.  BPA will write to all affected landowners and tenants ahead of the survey. If you have any special access arrangements or any that may have changed please let us know.

The team at BPA will be wearing high-vis clothing and following all the correct procedures required for working near to buried pipelines.

Keep a watch out for the team and don’t forget to contact the BPA Lands Team if you see anything suspicious or any unusual activity along the buried pipeline network.  If in doubt, simply call us on 0800 585 387 and we will do the rest.

 

Suspicious van near buried oil pipelines

There are more than 27,000 Km of buried high-pressure oil, gas and chemical pipelines that run the length and breadth of the UK, transporting critical supplies safely, effectively and efficiently across the country.

Unfortunately, in some instances these buried oil or gas pipelines can attract criminal interest whether the illegal tapping of fuel or unauthorised digging near to a pipeline.

BPA works closely with its network of landowners to raise awareness of the issue and asks landowners or tenants to keep vigilant and report any suspicious activities.  This can include seeing suspicious vans parking close to the pipeline, non BPA staff or contractors taking interest in the pipeline route / marker posts, signs of excavations or trenches around the pipeline or the use of hydraulic hoses and storage containers in remote areas.

We ask that all landowners remain vigilant as to any unusual activity undertaken and inform us of any suspicious activities.  If in doubt, simply call us on 01827 63708 and we will do the rest.

To help us most effectively manage the call, we’d ask where possible that callers provide the following information:

  • A contact number should we need to get hold of you
  • The location of the incident – whether a postcode, address or grid reference or even the proximity to a landmark
  • Have the emergency services been contacted?
  • Has anyone been injured?
  • Is there any sign of smoke or fire?
  • Are there still suspicious people or vehicles in the area?
  • Is there a strong smell of fuel, gas or any obvious signs of oil or gas leaking?
  • Is the incident near to a watercourse or public highway?

Even if you’re unable to answer all of the above, please still contact BPA and let us know of any concerns.

Our dedicated helpline number 0800 585 387 that is operated 24/7, 365 days of the year to support landowners or occupiers in the event of a pipeline emergency.  The team has a well-developed, regularly tested, emergency response process and is supported by retained specialist contractors that are in regular contact with the emergency services and regulatory bodies.

Once contacted by a landowner, our duty officer will process the information, provide advice and if necessary contact the emergency services.  The team will also undertake a site visit as well as manage and monitor the situation if required.

Thank you for remaining vigilant and please contact BPA’s Lands team on 0800 585 387 if you have any questions or would like to inform us of any suspicious or unusual activities along our pipeline network.

Buried Pipelines

Not taking the correct precautions when working near to BPA’s buried pipelines can have serious consequences.

BPA is however here to help by raising awareness of the issues and providing information and resource at no cost to those working in the vicinity of the buried pipelines.  With the right information and advice, we hope to reduce the risk of a serious incident on the pipelines that we manage.

The buried pipelines carry large volumes of highly flammable petroleum or natural gas products at very high pressure.  BPA’s land team supports landowners across the country by providing advice and support should works need to be carried out near to BPA’s buried pipelines.

The Pipeline Safety Regulations 1996 states that no person shall cause such damage to a pipeline as may give rise to a danger to persons.  Breaking these conditions can lead to prosecution, injury or even death as well as potentially some significant environmental damage.

If damage occurs to a buried pipeline, those commissioning the works (or their contractor) are responsible for any liability under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974.  Additionally, should there be any environmental damage, landowners may face prosecution by the Environment Agency as damage to a pipeline can cause serious pollution of soil, water and the atmosphere which is likely to lead to prosecution.

As well as potential prosecution or environmental damage, landowners could face a significant financial penalty as the repair and subsequent clean-up costs of a pipeline incident are typically in the region of £10m.

BPA is empowered to stop all works near the pipeline if it is considered to be unsafe to the pipeline.  The team is however on hand to offer free consultations over the phone or visit the site to help provide support and advice to those looking to operate near to the pipeline network.

Don’t risk damaging a buried pipeline.  Contact a member of BPA’s lands team if you are considering undertaking works near to BPA’s buried pipeline network.

Know what's below

As part of our ‘Know What’s Below’ campaign to communicate with landowners to ensure they inform us of any changes to landownership or plans to operate in the vicinity of pipelines, we trialled contacting landowners via SMS.

Despite the record responses to our annual letter, some landowners either lost their letters or were too busy to use the self-addressed response envelope.  To offer landowners an easy and convenient way of responding we thought it may work if we sent a text message to the contacts that we have not heard back from.

Of our target list of nearly 300 landowners we sent a simple message asking landowners to reply ‘correct’ or ‘incorrect’ to whether the information they had received from BPA was correct or not.  The response rates were very positive more than a quarter deciding to respond in this way.  Our records were updated to reflect those who responded ‘correct’ and while those who replied ‘incorrect’ were contacted by the team and their details were amended.

All recipients were given the option to opt out of the messaging, however the positive response rates showed that this harder to reach group welcomed the opportunity to respond in this way.

If you have any comments regarding our communications, please contact the team by using the email link below.

BPA's Know What's Below

BPA’s Know What’s Below campaign has received an overwhelming response from the letters it recently issued to nearly 2000 landowner and tenants along its 1000km pipeline network in the UK.

Recipients have responded in record numbers using the enclosed form and self-addressed envelopes, however the BPA Lands Department is keen for those still yet to respond to do so as soon as possible.

By responding, BPA is able to ensure all records are up to date and that they have the correct details should need to be contacted in the event of an emergency.  The letter also provides information on who landowners need to contact, and what to do, if they are required to operate in the vicinity of one of the high-pressure fuel pipelines.  By confirming the landowner details BPA, is able to contact the appropriate person in the need of an emergency.  The Know What’s Below communications campaign also aims to ensure that landowners and tenants along BPA’s pipeline network have the correct details should the need to get hold of a member of the BPA team in the case of a pipeline emergency.

Push for responses

With one final push for responses, BPA is set to select five lucky winners to each receive a luxurious hamper as part of an annual prize draw.  The prize draw for the delicious £100 hamper is made at Christmas, with the winners notified directly by a member of the BPA Lands team.  The BPA team regularly undertakes line walking exercises to survey the land and often makes contact with landowners along the BPA Pipeline network.  This helps ensure that the team is on hand, approachable and available to add expertise and advice to landowners.

If you’ve still not submitted your response, please do so as soon as possible or call a member of BPA’s Lands Department on 0800 585 387 if you are unsure or have lost your documents.  Click here to email the team.

BPA Lands Department

As part of BPA’s Know What’s Below campaign the company’s Lands Department has issued letters to nearly 2000 landowner and tenants along BPA’s 1000km pipeline network in the UK.

BPA is requesting all recipients to respond to the letter using the enclosed form and self-addressed envelope.  By responding, we are able to ensure our records are up to date and that we have the correct details should we need to contact landowners in the event of an emergency or planned works.  The letter also provides information on who landowners need to contact, and what to do, if they are required to operate in the vicinity of one of the high-pressure fuel pipelines.

Those who respond to the request and return their completed forms in the self-addressed envelope by the end of June will automatically be entered into a prize draw to receive one of five luxurious hampers.

By responding, BPA is able to ensure all records are up to date and that they have the correct details should need to be contacted in the event of an emergency.  The letter also provides information on who landowners need to contact, and what to do, if they are required to operate in the vicinity of one of the high-pressure fuel pipelines.  By confirming the landowner details BPA, is able to contact the appropriate person in the need of an emergency.  The Know What’s Below communications campaign also aims to ensure that landowners and tenants along BPA’s pipeline network have the correct details should the need to get hold of a member of the BPA team in the case of a pipeline emergency.

Please keep a look out for the letter and be sure to promptly return it to the BPA team.

Many thanks

 

BPA’s Lands Department

Buried High Pressure Oil Pipelines

We’re delighted to announce that the winners of this year’s Know What’s Below hampers are Mr Bell from Cobham, Surrey, and Mrs Deborah Todd from Latimer, near Chesham.  The two winners were selected at random from the hundreds of landowners and tenants who confirmed their contact details and map outlining their ownership of the land that contain’s BPA’s buried high pressure oil pipelines.

Each year BPA writes to the landowners along its pipeline network to remind them of the high-pressure oil pipeline that runs under their land, what to do if they need to undertake groundworks in the vicinity of the pipeline and to check that they are still responsible for the land.  Everyone who returns the map, confirming their details is entered into the prize drawn

The hamper, worth more than £100, is packed with goodies, including wine, chocolates and plenty of other Christmas goodies.  Both recipients were presented with their hampers by members of BPA’s lands team.

Phil Taylor, BPA’s Lands Manager, comments: “Each year we write to landowners to remind them of the high-pressure oil pipeline pipelines that run under their land and to confirm that we have their correct contact details.  Those who respond are automatically entered into the draw and it’s great to be able to give these two lucky landowners a treat just before Christmas.”

High Pressure Oil Pipelines

Letters are sent to more than 2000 recipients along the BPA pipeline network as part of the company’s “Know What’s Below” campaign.  The campaign has helped reduce the number of incidents, accidents and spills along the pipeline network.  In case of emergency relating to the high pressure oil pipelines, contact BPA’s Lands Team here.

BPA Line Walking - Know What's Below

As part of an ongoing programme of line walking, the BPA team has announced that it will be visiting a number of sections of pipeline in the coming weeks including; Bovingdon, just outside of Hemel Hempstead and from the north of Buncefield through Hertfordshire and into Bedfordshire.

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