Latest pipeline fire brings up safety concerns of future pipeline projects
Paradis, La. - A Phillips 66 pipeline exploded on Thursday evening, resulting in a fire that is still burning on Friday morning in St. Charles Parish. The pipeline explosion left several workers injured and one missing. Over 60 homes in the area were evacuated as a result of the blaze and there is no information on when the fire will end.
“We are devastated to hear about last night’s pipeline explosion. Our hearts go out to the workers and their families,” said Cyn Sarthou, Executive Director of Gulf Restoration Network. “Pipelines are touted by industry to be the safest mechanism for transporting oil and gas. This latest disaster illustrates that pipelines are not safe, and that our communities are not safe when pipelines cut through them.”
Phillips 66 owns the pipeline that exploded on Thursday evening and is also an investor in the proposed Bayou Bridge Pipeline. The proposed 160-mile pipeline would run through eleven parishes, from Lake Charles to St. James, cutting across nearly 600 acres of wetlands, 700 bodies of water, and hundreds of Louisiana communities.The Bayou Bridge pipeline is a joint venture between Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics. Sunoco Logistics and Energy Transfer Partners are the two companies with the worst safety records of any pipeline companies.
“As the Phillips 66 pipeline fire continues to burn, can we really trust their assurances that another pipeline would be safe?” asked Sarthou. “Clearly, if the Bayou Bridge pipeline is built it will place our communities and our workers at risk. How many disasters must happen before we admit that pipelines are unsafe?”