ExxonMobil Pipeline Rupture | Yellowstone River | 2011 | 11,000 Gal Crude

Oil Gushes For An Hour Before Exxon Notices

Exxon fouls Yellowstone river

In July 2011, Exxon’s 12 inch pipeline under the Yellowstone River near Laurel, Montana ruptured, fouling 70 miles downstream, killing fish and wildlife and prompting a massive, months-long cleanup. Now Exxon is all pissy about a little fine $1.7 million dollar fine*.

The original problem was that floodwater damaged the pipeline. Was this an accident. Not really. Exxon chose not to bury the pipeline deep enough. Once debris began washing down the river, the pipeline blew.

Exxon did not shut down the valve that controlled flow, because it took them an hour to notice. Houston, I think we have a problem. Further, the company kept the pipeline operating during a flood threat, when other companies shut down. The subsequent investigation also indicated that Exxon has ignored reports of erosion on the line. ‘Cause then they would have had to spend money.**

For a global perspective on oil and gas leaks, explosions and other screw ups, visit the CatMap Petroleum Screw Ups Map


*Exxon avoided most of its liability for the Exxon Valdez spill.
**The company’s profits for fiscal year 2012 were $41 BILLION dollars. Profit.

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