About 430 oil and gas pipelines near buildings in Colorado failed integrity testing but most pipelines passed

Most oil or gas pipelines located near occupied buildings in Colorado passed integrity testing ordered by Colorado regulators in the wake of a fatal home explosion in Firestone, but about 430 of the pipelines failed.

Colorado regulators on Wednesday posted the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission’s data on the integrity testing. The data showed that of the 120,814 pipeline segments within 1,000 of a building, 107,297 passed the integrity testing. Operators reported that 428 pipelines did not pass the testing.

A failed integrity test can mean a faulty valve, flange or a fitting that needs to be tightened, or it’s the result of corrosion in a pipe that results in a pinhole leak.

The status of another 13,090 pipelines near buildings still is unclear, and regulators are working with the operators to get more information on those pipelines.

“We’d prefer the number of failed tests be zero, but considering the volume of flowline segments under review (120,000+), it represents 0.35 percent of lines in the review,” COGCC spokesman Todd Hartman wrote in an e-mail.

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