On Monday, May 10th we advised of a priority dig that Enbridge has already started to assess. This is an update with more details for your review.
Our goal at Enbridge is, and will always be, the prevention of all incidents. Prevention is a key element of our multi-faceted approach to pipeline and facility safety. As part of this prevention program, Enbridge conducts periodic in-line inspections to monitor the integrity of our pipelines. When data collected from these inspections meet criteria that requires Enbridge to take a closer look, we will excavate and assess the pipeline and, if necessary, conduct repairs. These excavations are often referred to as integrity digs.
Recent data collection and analysis has determined that Enbridge excavate, assess and repair as needed a small section of Line 21 at Kilometer Post (KP) 137.85 approximately 50 kilometers south of Tulita, NT. This priority maintenance dig is required to be completed by early June; therefore, work would need to start soon. Enbridge continues to conduct field assessments of the work area; and has submitted an operations and maintenance notification to the Canadian Energy Regulator (CER). All work will occur on the Enbridge Line 21 right-of-way (ROW).
We plan to execute the work in three distinct steps to eliminate the transmission of COVID-19.
Step 1: Hand excavate the dig location starting on or around May 14th. The length of time it will take for this step will depend on ground conditions. Workers participating in step one will be local to the Tulita District and Enbridge’s Line 21 Operations team.
Step 2: Conduct preventative maintenance on pipe section starting around May 31st. This work will be completed by non-resident workers from outside of the Northwest Territories. It’s estimated there will 8-10 non-resident workers at peak. This work will include construction supervision/inspection, welding, non-destructive examination (NDE), pipeline maintenance by Enbridge Pipeline Maintenance (PLM). Non-resident workers will not intermingle with local workers or people in the Tulita District.
Step 3: Backfill the dig location starting on or around June 4th. The length of time it will take for this step will depend on ground conditions. Workers participating in step three will be local to the Tulita District and Enbridge’s Line 21 Operations team.
Similar to the work completed south of Tulita this past winter, Enbridge will implement stringent processes to manage the transmission of COVID-19.
- Non-resident workers deemed essential to completing this maintenance work will be kept to an absolute minimum.
- Non-resident workers will not be allowed to enter the NWT by plane until have produced a negative COVID-19 test result.
- Non-resident workers will enter NWT by a private charter plane and travel directly to a designated Norman Wells camp.
- This camp will only be utilized by non-resident workers associated with this maintenance work. There will be no local staff as the work is short term. Food will be prepared elsewhere for a contactless drop off.
- Non-resident workers should have no reason to enter any communities, specifically Tulita, unless otherwise approved in advance by community representatives. Non-resident worker travel in Norman Wells is restricted to only travel from camp to helicopter hanger and back to camp.
- Helicopter pilot and passengers will follow all COVID-19 mitigations.
- All workers will be required to adhere to the COVID-19 mitigation plan that includes social distancing, enhanced disinfection procedures, etc.
- If a non-resident worker displays signs of illness, they will be instructed to isolate in their room until further instructions are received from the Office of the Chief Public Health Officer.
We hope that yourself and community members view this as a balanced and reasonable approach to conducting this maintenance work while providing inclusion and mitigating the transmission of COVID-19. Please feel free to circulate this email inside the community; and be in touch anytime if there are any questions, concerns, or input.