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Ruptured Trinidad Heritage pipeline in Vessigny repaired

Marvin Hamilton/TT Newsday

In this November 17 file photo, workers of Heritage Petroleum Company Limited were at
the Vessigny Beach tending to an oil leak at the Vessigny river.

By TT Newsday

PORT SPAIN
Petroleumworld 11 23 2021

Before they knew the six-inch pipeline was leaking oil, residents got confused when they started smelling strong fumes late at night on November 16.

One resident assumed someone was pouring kerosene around their house to set it on fire, while another thought their brush cutter was leaking fuel.

On realising the pipeline was causing the smell the next day, they quickly alerted Heritage and the company’s disaster response team was dispatched.

On Monday, residents were happy to report that the pipeline had been repaired.

Kevina Dickson, whose family lives near the spill, told Newsday, Heritage "just told us a line had a leak and they clamped it...that was about it.

“I’m not affected any more because the smell has dissipated, so that’s a good thing.”

Moving forward, Dickson said she hopes Heritage upgrades its pipeline infrastructure which she assumes is outdated, given the number of oil spills that have occurred recently.

“I hope that they would do a lot of upgrades to their old lines, because I know a lot of lines need repairs. So I’m hoping that they can do that to minimise (the risk of) other spills occurring.”

Apart from the Vessigny spill, ruptured Heritage pipelines have caused other recent spills, including one in Pointe-a-Pierre on August 8, Point Fortin on September 13 and two separate spills in Santa Flora and Cocoyea on October 28.

Contacted for comment, a Heritage official confirmed repairs on the ruptured Vessigny pipeline were complete.

Asked if the recent spills suggested infrastructural problems with Heritage’s pipeline network that needed to be addressed, the official told Newsday they were unable to comment.

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