November, 2014

201414NovAll Day10 year anniversary of Europe’s worst High Pressure Pipeline incidentPSF Learning Brief 012 Origin: PSF Lessons:Contractor Management,Control of Work,Emergency PreparednessLanguage:EN


On 30th July 2004 at Ghislenghien, Belgium – 24 people died, 120+ injured when 1000mm dia high pressure pipeline ruptured.

Emergency services were attending and investigating a report of a gas escape at ~8.30am. Whilst they were on site at ~9.00am the high pressure gas pipeline ruptured.

Construction work on site involved levelling the ground using excavator which resulted in reduced cover above the pipe. The pipe was damaged during work (75% reduced wall thickness).

Prior to starting the work on the 16th July the construction company had contacted the pipeline operator, who located and marked the pipeline, however sometime between the 17th and 29th of July the pipeline was damaged.

During July the pipeline was operating pressure had been reduced to 50 Barg for maintenance and shortly before the 30th July the pressure was increased to 80 Barg..


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