Missouri leak prompts closure of parts of TransCanada, Enbridge pipelines

ST. LOUIS — An oil leak near St. Louis prompted the closure of parts of two pipelines as crews work to determine the source, company officials and Missouri regulators said Thursday.

The leak was discovered Wednesday near St. Charles, Mo., about 48 kilometres northwest of St. Louis. TransCanada Corp.'s Keystone pipeline and Enbridge Inc.'s Platte pipeline are among several that run through the area. Crews on Thursday were preparing excavation work to figure out where the leak originated.

article continues below

"The source of the release has not been fully determined, but it is apparent that it originated at either the TransCanada Keystone pipeline or the Enbridge pipeline; there is no visible release near the other pipelines," Missouri Department of Natural Resources spokesman Brian Quinn said in an email.

TransCanada spokesman Terry Cunha said in a statement that the Keystone pipeline was closed from Steele City, Neb., to Patoka, Ill. Enbridge's Platte pipeline was initially closed from Casper, Wyoming, to Wood River, Illinois. By Thursday, only the section from Salisbury, Mo., to Wood River remained closed, a company spokesman said in an email. Both companies are based in Calgary and have cleanup crews at the site.

Officials don't yet know how much oil leaked, but the DNR's preliminary estimate is 43 barrels, or 6,814 litres. Quinn said the spill was contained to an area of about 372 square metres, and did not reach any waterways, including the Mississippi River, which is about 610 metres away.

A St. Charles County spokeswoman said there did not appear to be any evacuations since the area near the leak is not heavily populated.

The 76-centimetre diameter Keystone line and the 51-centimetre diameter Enbridge line are both buried about 2.4 metres below the surface, Quinn said.

Shares of TransCanada and Enbridge both dropped about one per cent.

© Copyright Weyburn Review