As part of the expansion, we are reviewing and enhancing our Emergency Management Program (EMP) and associated emergency response plans (ERP) to address requirements of the expanded system. The existing program contains robust plans for the entire pipeline system and associated infrastructure. These plans are continually reviewed, revised, practiced and communicated with first responders all along the pipeline system. Learn more about our existing emergency preparedness planning.

Our Emergency Management team is working to ensure that when the expansion goes into operation, the existing Emergency Management Program has been enhanced to accommodate the complete system, which consists of the existing pipeline, the twinned pipeline and the associated facilities and infrastructure. Our goal is to operate, manage and protect the pipeline system, so that the EMP never has to be used, however to be well prepared in case a need should arise.

Emergency Response Plan Enhancement Process

 Trans Mountain will enhance the existing ERPs through internal assessment, stakeholder engagement, Aboriginal engagement, modelling and field studies. Enhancement of the ERPs will be based on the following process:

  1. Spill Modelling Created Planning is based on risk. Spill modelling is used to establish the credible worst-case geographic scope for emergency response planning. The volume of a hypothetical oil spill is calculated based on assumptions including the time taken to detect the spill and the time required to isolate the section of pipeline with valve closures and the time required for the pipeline segment to drain down. Geographic Information System (GIS) is then used to determine where, based on local terrain, the oil would be expected to flow and where that flow is predicted to enter a water body.
  2. Determine Impact and Resources Needed for Response Once the geographic response area is established, the Trans Mountain Planning Standard is applied to determine the locations and extent of the resources required to facilitate an effective response. Resources include personnel and equipment considerations.
  3. Develop Plan to Carry Out Response After spill modelling is analyzed, a field program is executed to confirm appropriate control points as required to meet our Planning Standard and to ensure Geographic Response Plans (GRP) are achievable. When response plans are drafted, they’re reviewed with local subject matter experts and changes are incorporated into the program.
  4. Document and Train After final review, the training program is updated and training is implemented for personnel responsible for emergency response.

 The EMP incorporates all these processes into the program that is reviewed regularly to ensure geographically specific information is kept up to date and that plans are enhanced.

What’s Next?

In addition to continuing education and first responder outreach conducted as part of our ongoing Public Awareness Program, we hosted a series of workshops in 2013, 2014 and 2015 with first responders, representatives from Aboriginal communities, emergency managers and representatives from all levels of government. These workshops have been an effective way to improve understanding, address concerns and identify areas where we can work collaboratively with communities in emergency planning.

Consultation with local public safety agencies and other expert stakeholders will continue as part of Trans Mountain’s Emergency Management Engagement Program with a focus on recording local knowledge and experience to help further develop GRPs. We are engaging directly with Aboriginal groups on the EMP enhancements to seek their input and comments into the ERP and to address their concerns or questions about emergency response in their territories.

Aspects of the enhanced EMP and ERPs will be shared with public safety agencies, Aboriginal groups and other jurisdictions for their feedback before they’re submitted to the NEB.