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Colonial Pipeline fire contained; pipeline continues to burn

HELENA, Ala. – On Tuesday, just before 2:00 p.m., a Colonial Pipeline contract crew was working on Line 1 in Shelby Co. An incident involving the trackhoe the crew was using hit the line. Gasoline was ignited and caused a fire, which continues to burn into Tuesday. Local emergency responders have contained the fire, which is being allowed to burn under the supervision of local fire and emergency management personnel.
According to Colonial Pipeline, one person died at the scene while five other people were transported to Birmingham-area hospitals for treatment. Colonial Pipeline offered a statement Monday night saying: “Our deepest condolences go out tonight to the family and friends of the person who was lost today, and our thoughts and prayers are with those who were injured.”

Colonial Pipeline representatives said the company’s top priorities continue to be ensuring the safety of responders, and supporting the personnel and their families who have been impacted by the event. The company is working with the contractor partner and have deployed a family and community support team, which includes grief counselors.

No observable impacts have been noted on nearby waterways or drainage paths. The company said Tuesday afternoon, out of an abundance of caution, a containment boom has been deployed at two different locations on the Cahaba River. The incident location is several miles from the site of a Sept. 9 spill in Shelby County.

Colonial is working with federal, state and local agencies, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Department of Transportation, Alabama Department of Emergency Management, Alabama Forestry Commission, Alabama Department of Environmental Management, Shelby County Emergency Management Agency, Regional Paramedical Services, the Cahaba Riverkeeper and fire departments from Chilton, Tuscaloosa and Shelby counties and the cities of Pelham and Helena.

Line 1, Colonial’s gasoline line, remained shut down as of 11:15 a.m. The company anticipates Line 1 remaining down for the remainder of the week. Line 2, which transports diesel, jet fuel and other distillates, was restarted at approximately 11:00 p.m. Monday.

Michael Brannon for | © 2016, City Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.

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