As the season changes to warmer spring weather, Trans Mountain is actively monitoring the pipeline for environmental hazards. The spring thaw, commonly known as a freshet, is a result of snow and ice moving and melting into a river system. The additional water entering the system causes rivers to rise and can lead to flooding.

Flooding is one of many common natural hazards that are considered during pipeline construction. Trans Mountain’s robust pipeline Integrity Management and Emergency Management Programs manage operational concerns, including those related to seasonal challenges that can potentially affect the pipeline.

Trans Mountain is prepared to prevent incidents, including issues resulting from flood waters. We monitor the pipeline closely to assess any potential seasonal risks that could affect operations. Although the pipeline is buried below ground, flood waters can scour the soil around the right-of-way, which may result in exposure of the line. If flood waters put the pipeline at risk, Trans Mountain’s Flood Management Plans are activated. Trans Mountain’s Emergency Response Plans ensure effective operational monitoring practices are followed, Incident Command Systems are in place, notification plans are outlined and response measures are detailed.

Throughout construction on the Trans Mountain Expansion Project, we’ve implemented a risk-based design process to minimize the possibility of a pipeline incident and maintain safe operations through appropriate mitigation. This includes identifying potential issues associated with natural hazards and seasonal risks. Trans Mountain’s top priority remains public safety and protecting the integrity of the pipeline and the environment.