Emergency Responder Resources

When responding to a pipeline emergency, here are a few suggestions for keeping the public safe in the event of a pipeline emergency:

Assess the situation

  • Identify the pipeline type and product
  • Safety considerations
  • Exposures and environmental conditions
  • Potential for the situation to escalate
  • Determine the wind direction and approach with caution
  • Eliminate all ignition sources

Protect the public

  • Evacuate or shelter the location to isolate the public
  • Secure the area and deny entry to unauthorized personnel
  • Use barricades to limit access
  • Reroute traffic and shut off electricity and residential gas supply

Work with the pipeline operator

  • Notify the pipeline operator
  • Relate as much information as possible
  • Allow only trained pipeline personnel to close valves.
    • Unauthorized or improper operation of valves could worsen the situation or cause additional incidents

Control the release

If there is a leak

  • Contact the operator BEFORE taking action – pipeline marker signs show the pipeline company’s name, emergency telephone number and pipeline contents
  • Be conscious of flammability and toxicity hazards
  • Eliminate all ignition sources

If gas vapor is present

  • Do NOT ignite the vapor cloud
  • Be aware of structures that are ventilated by force

If there is a fire

  • Let the primary fire burn
  • Wait for the pipeline operator to shut off the flow of gas
  • Address any secondary areas of concern


Related Links:

If you are an emergency responder or public official and would like more information about pipeline safety, emergency response drills, training, emergency response plans, integrity management plans, or maps, please e-mail or call 800-WILLIAMS (800-945-5426).