Transneft Siberia has conducted a test firefighting and tactical drill at a tank farm of Aprelskaya line operation dispatcher station (LODS) affiliated with Surgut Oil Trunk Pipeline Directorate (OTPD). The drill was held jointly with the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Region Directorate of the Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations.
Under the drill’s scenario, thickness of barrier structures was reduced at tank No. 2 with the capacity of 20,000 m3 under exposure to chemical (sulphur) corrosion inside the tank, which led to ferrous sulphide sediments forming (porous substance with poor mechanical strength that easily oxidise in air, emitting heat and sulphur); the mixture of vapour and air ignited. This resulted in an “explosion” in the tank that blew its roof off and cast it aside. As per the drill’s plot, oil inflamed throughout the whole VST (vertical steel tank) area.
Within 3 minutes a watch from the facility-based firefighting crew of Aprelskaya LODS that was on duty arrived at the scene of the simulated fire, consisting of two squads in two fire engines (an ATs-100 tank vehicle and a firefighting foam tower). Firefighting units of the Kogalym fire rescue garrison arrived a bit later. Two foam attacks were undertaken to put out the “fire”: by injecting foam into the oil layer and by a combined method of injecting foam both into the oil layer and onto its surface. During the extinction of the “fire”, the burning tank and the adjacent tanks were being cooled down.
Managers of the executive office of Transneft Siberia and Surgut OTPD, maintenance departments and members of Aprelskaya LODS’s volunteer fire brigade as well as forces and equipment of the Kogalym fire rescue garrison were engaged in the “firefighting”, with a total of 17 vehicles, more than 100 fire guards and employees of Aprelskaya LODS taking part.
The purpose of the drill was to coordinate actions of persons managing the firefighting processs during proper evaluation of a fire situation by external criteria and during selection of the deciding direction for extinction. Besides, the event served to determine the level of preparedness of the Kogalym fire rescue garrison to fight a fire at a tank farm and to use firefighting equipment and the level of interaction between the firefighting units and departments of Aprelskaya LODS.
Holding emergency response drills involving units’ personnel and departments of Transneft Siberia is a crucial component in ensuring fire, industrial and environmental safety at the Company’s facilities. Being engaged in activities potentially linked to a high hazard level, Transneft Siberia develops and operates its oil trunk transportation system to ensure that the health and lives of its employees and people living in areas of the Company’s operation are protected from accidents at hazardous production facilities, along with zero environmental impact.