BPA supporting UKOPA

The team at BPA was delighted to be involved in supporting our colleagues from the United Kingdom Onshore Pipeline Operators Association (UKOPA) with their latest video to help raise awareness of the pipeline amongst both landowners and contractors.

UKOPA is the authoritative industry body behind the essential energy pipeline infrastructure. The UK’s 27,000km pipeline network provides the safest and most efficient means of transporting a range of hazardous fluids, and pipeline operators are constantly working to improve safety and protect the environment.  The organisation, established in 1996, has brought operators together and helped them engage more effectively with each other, as well as with regulators and other key stakeholders.

The filming took place just outside of Milton Keynes where BPA’s lands team are involved in supporting landowners, contractors and local authorities during the development of the site into a multifunctional space for schools, housing and commercial buildings.

BPA’s lands team helped supervise ground works by marking out the pipeline for contractors and also being on hand while excavation work was carried out to ensure the pipeline was protected at all times.  The works were recorded and will be shared with other landowners and contractors looking to carry our similar works.

The video aims to help prevent damage to pipelines as this can have serious consequences including: environmental damage if product was to leak into the soil, water or atmosphere; financial penalty as any repairs or subsequent clean-ups costs can run into the millions as well as potential prosecution under The Pipeline Safety Regulations 1996 – which states that no person shall cause such damage to a pipeline as may give rise to a danger to persons.

Perhaps the most important reason for contacting BPA in advance of any works near to the pipeline are the risks of injury or even death caused by damaging the pipeline.  Should there be an incident, those commissioning the works (or their contractor) are responsible for any liability under the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974.  The video aims to highlight these issues amongst landowners and contractors.

BPA’s lands team is on hand to support landowners or contractors who are planning to work anywhere near our pipelines.  Please call BPA free on 0800 585 387 and we will come and locate the pipeline, provide advice and ensure your safety.

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.