British Columbia

Trans Mountain Pipeline spill in Abbotsford estimated at up to 190,000 litres of crude oil

A spill of light crude oil on Saturday from the Trans Mountain Pipeline in Abbotsford, B.C. has now been estimated at between 150,000 to 190,000 litres, or 1,195 barrels.

Company says crude oil spill was caused by a fitting on a small piece of pipe

Trans Mountain says initial estimates indicate up to 1,195 barrels of light crude oil spilled from its Sumas pump station in Abbotsford, B.C. on Saturday June 13, 2020. (Chantelle Bellrichard)

UPDATE: Trans Mountain says pipeline has restarted after crude oil spill

A spill of light crude oil on Saturday from the Trans Mountain Pipeline in Abbotsford, B.C. has now been estimated at between 150,000 to 190,000 litres, or up to 1,195 barrels.

Trans Mountain says the pipeline was immediately shut down after learning of a spill at its Sumas Pump Station early Saturday morning. 

It says the spill was confined to the facility's property and no waterways were impacted.

"Clean-up is well underway with trucks and crews working around the clock," said Trans Mountain in a statement.

The company said the free-standing oil has been recovered and is being transported to an approved facility for disposal.

It also has permanent groundwater monitoring in place at the site along with air monitoring. Trans Mountain said it has not identified any risk to the public or community from the spill. 

The company said it will re-start the pipeline Sunday afternoon after all procedures and safety protocols are completed. 

'Deeply concerning'

B.C.'s Ministry of Environment called the spill "deeply concerning." 

"Our government maintains that the TMX project poses unacceptable risks to our environment, our coast and our economy," said the ministry in a statement.

"The Ministry of Environment will continue to monitor the situation and ensure all timely, appropriate and adequate response measures are taken."

Trans Mountain said the spill was related to a fitting on a small, one-inch in diameter piece of pipe connected to the mainline. 

It said no construction activity was taking place at the facility, including work related to the company's $12.6 billion project to triple the capacity of the oil pipeline which runs from Edmonton to Burnaby.   

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