Monthly Archives: October 2010

Corrosion and the AS 2885 safety process

I’m interested in feedback from those of you involved in pipeline maintenance or corrosion management. My experience of Australian safety management studies is that when the threat of external corrosion comes up we say something like “It’s got factory applied … Continue reading

Posted in Risk assessment, Standards | 12 Comments

San Bruno prelim NTSB report

I confess to an almost voyeuristic fascination with pipeline incidents, of which the latest remains San Bruno.  Partly that interest is the hope that we can learn from the misfortunes of others, but it’s also partly just naked curiosity (well, … Continue reading

Posted in Incidents | Leave a comment

Rules are for breaking?

The Discworld series of novels by Terry Pratchett present an entertaining combination of comedy and sardonic commentary in a bizarre fantasy world.  (Pratchett also shows a very good grasp of scientific and technical matters.)  In Thief of Time a senior … Continue reading

Posted in Eng'g philosophy, Risk assessment, Standards | 5 Comments

Un-de-rating flanges

Flanges have pressure ratings defined by a standard, most commonly ANSI/ASME B16.5 for which the pressure ratings decrease as temperature rises above 38ºC.  However the basis for the rating is conservative and AS 2885 allows some exemption from the de-rating … Continue reading

Posted in Standards | 9 Comments

San Bruno fracture images

Found some pictures here of the failed San Bruno pipe, along with some experts’ (?) comments.  I can’t draw even superficial conclusions as the pictures aren’t detailed enough and I lack the expertise anyway.  However the zig-zag fracture with long … Continue reading

Posted in Incidents | 4 Comments

San Bruno and High Reliability Organisations

Item 1:  I guess any pipeline engineer who has been paying attention is aware of the recent San Bruno disaster in California, which killed 8 people.  Among other things it lead to a flurry of reports in local media in … Continue reading

Posted in Eng'g philosophy, Risk assessment | 3 Comments

Risk method diversity

If there’s one thing that has struck me here at the International Pipeline Conference it’s that there is a great diversity of approaches to pipeline risk management.  If you’ve only been exposed to the AS 2885 approach you might not … Continue reading

Posted in Conferences, Eng'g philosophy, Risk assessment | 1 Comment