|Industry||Oil and gas|
Richard D. Kinder|
William V. Morgan
|Headquarters||Houston, Texas, U.S.|
|United States and Canada|
|Revenue||US$13.705 billion (2017)|
|US$3.544 billion (2017)|
|US$183 million (2017)|
|Total assets||US$79.055 billion (2017)|
|Total equity||US$33.636 billion (2017)|
Number of employees
|10,897 (December 2017)|
Kinder Morgan owns an interest in or operates approximately 85,000 miles (137 000 km) of pipelines and 152 terminals.  Their pipelines transport natural gas, refined petroleum products, crude oil, carbon dioxide and more. They also store or handle a variety of products and materials at their terminals such as gasoline, jet fuel, ethanol, coal, petroleum coke and steel.
The company has approximately 72,000 miles (115 900 km) of natural gas pipelines and moves about 38 percent of the natural gas consumed in the United States. Kinder Morgan is also the largest independent terminal operator and the largest independent transporter of petroleum products in North America. The company's CO2 division provides carbon dioxide (CO2) for enhanced oil recovery projects in North America.
Kinder Morgan Energy Partners (KMP) was founded in 1997 when a group of investors acquired the general partner of a small, publicly traded pipeline limited partnership (Enron Liquids Pipeline, L.P.) later renamed Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, L.P.
In 1999, Kinder Morgan conducted a reverse merger with KN Energy, a utility and pipeline company. Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America (NGPL), which serves the Chicago market, was acquired through this deal. KN Energy became Kinder Morgan's second publicly traded company, Kinder Morgan, Inc. (KMI).
In 2001, Kinder Morgan's third publicly traded company, Kinder Morgan Management, LLC (KMR) was formed to facilitate institutional ownership of KMP equity.
On August 28, 2006, Kinder Morgan announced that it would be taken private in a management-led leveraged buyout totaling approximately $22 billion. Outside participants in the transaction include Fayez Sarofim, Goldman Sachs Capital Partners and Highstar Capital (then owned by American International Group). KMI began trading again on the NYSE on February 11, 2011, following the largest private-equity backed U.S. IPO offering in history.
In October 2011, Kinder Morgan Inc. agreed to buy El Paso Corp. (EP) for $21.1 billion and gave the combined company 67,000 miles (107,000 kilometers) of gas lines, eclipsing Enterprise Products Partners LP (EPD) as the biggest U.S. pipeline operator. The transaction paid with shares of Kinder Morgan, Kinder Morgan warrants, and all of cash portion $11.5 billion through Barclays Plc (BARC) borrowing.
On August 10, 2014, Kinder announced it was moving to full ownership of its partially owned subsidiaries Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, Kinder Morgan Management, and El Paso Pipeline Partners in a deal worth $71 billion. The transaction closed on November 26, 2014.
Prior to November 26, 2014, the Kinder Morgan group publicly traded companies included Kinder Morgan, Inc. (NYSE: KMI), Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, L.P. (NYSE: KMP), Kinder Morgan Management, LLC (NYSE: KMR) and El Paso Pipeline Partners, L.P. (NYSE: EPB); a merger transaction combined all under Kinder Morgan, Inc. (NYSE: KMI), on November 26, 2014.
American Petroleum Tankers
On December 23, 2013, Kinder Morgan announced that, through its Kinder Morgan Energy partner subsidiary (ticker KMP on NYSE), it would acquire the US oil tanker operator American Petroleum Tankers (APT) and its affiliated company SCT (State Class Tankers) from the US private equity investment firms Blackstone Group and Cerberus Capital management. APT operates a fleet of five US flagged MR 50,000 tons—330,000 barrels—oil tankers and has four other similar tankers on order from the General Dynamics shipbuilding company NASSCO in California. This acquisition appears to be the first case whereby a pipeline operator will also be able to offer marine transportation.
This acquisition would facilitate the export of U.S. natural resources to overseas markets, and Kinder Morgan had lined up "some LNG export customers" by July 2014.
- Plantation Pipeline (2000)(HL) (with ExxonMobil)
- Calnev Pipeline (2001) (HL)
- Central Florida Pipeline (2001)(HL)
- Midcontinent Express Pipeline (KM owned 50% by 2007) (GT)
- Fayetteville Express Pipeline LLC (co-owned with Energy Transfer Partners 2008) (GT)
- Kinder Morgan Altamont LLC (GG)
- Kinder Morgan Cochin LLC (HL)
- Kinder Morgan CO2 Company, Houston, Texas (HL)
- Kinder Morgan, Inc., Houston, Texas
- Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America (co-owned with Brookfield Infrastructure Partners L.P.) (GT)
- Kinder Morgan Terminals, Houston, Texas (HL)
- Kinder Morgan Louisiana Pipeline LLC (KMLP), Crowley, Louisiana (GT)
- Kinder Morgan North Texas Pipeline (GT)
- Kinder Morgan Wink Pipeline (HL)
El Paso Corporation was purchased in 2012 with subsidiaries:
- Tennessee Gas Pipeline (GT) (2012)
- Southern Natural Gas Company (GT) (2012)
- Colorado Interstate Gas Co (HL & GT) (2012)
- Ruby Pipeline (2012)
- Wyoming Interstate Co (2012)
- El Paso Natural Gas Co (GT) (2012)
- Mojave Pipeline Co (GT) (2012)
- Florida Gas Transmission Company, LLC (50% by 2014) (GT)
Kinder Morgan, Inc. is a leading pipeline transportation and energy storage company in North America. Kinder Morgan owns or operates approximately 84,000 miles (135 200 km) of pipelines transporting primarily natural gas, crude oil, and petroleum products.
In Canada, Kinder Morgan operates the Trans Mountain oil pipeline which links Alberta with Vancouver, BC, as well as the Cochin pipeline between Western Canada and the US Midwest.
Trans Mountain Pipeline
In 2013, Kinder Morgan filed its application to the Canadian National Energy Board (NEB) for building a second pipeline roughly parallel to the existing Trans Mountain, for transporting diluted bitumen between Edmonton, Alberta and Burnaby, east of Vancouver, BC. The new pipeline would nearly triple the transportation capacity from 300,000 to 850,000 barrels per day, for an estimated investment of $6.8 billion. This expansion would enable the export of larger volumes of Alberta's bituminous sands oil to the US and to Asian countries.
Kinder Morgan had the support of several large petroleum industry customers for this expansion, (BP Canada Energy Trading Co., Canadian Natural Resources, Canadian Oil Sands Ltd., Cenovus Energy Inc., Devon Canada Corp., Husky Energy Marketing Inc., Imperial Oil Ltd., Nexen Marketing Inc., Statoil Canada Ltd., Suncor Energy Marketing Inc., Suncor Energy Products Partnership, Tesoro Refining & Marketing Co. and Total E&P Canada Ltd.).
This project is controversial, as are similar pipeline projects like Northern Gateway from Alberta to Kitimat, BC, Keystone XL to the US south and Line 9 (Enbridge's project, from Sarnia to Montreal), all of which expand the transportation capacity of heavy crude to refineries or loading ports for export to the US or overseas.
The expansion project faced strong opposition from civic governments, First Nations, environmentally concerned citizens, and others. Protests started in 2014 and were continuing in the spring of 2018.
Members of the Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations of British Columbia, Canada paddled canoes on the waters of Burrard Inlet to the Kinder Morgan Burnaby Terminal for a ceremony to protest the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, in North Vancouver, BC, on September 1, 2012. Tsleil-Waututh leaders hoped to shut down the project altogether.
The existing and proposed pipelines ship diluted bitumen through the Strait of Juan de Fuca, an extremely sensitive environmental region. The tankers have to pass through a very narrow channel of shallow water to reach the open sea, making the project controversial and strongly opposed by some Canadians  and Americans, for reasons similar to the opposition to Keystone XL, Line 9, and Northern Gateway and offshore deep ocean oil drilling.
In 2016, B.C. said that it did not support Trans Mountain, partly because Kinder Morgan has not provided enough information about its proposed spill prevention program.
Northeast Energy Direct Pipeline
This high-pressure 30-inch (762 mm) gas transmission pipeline, proposed in 2014, was slated to pass from Wright, New York to Dracut, Massachusetts, to “help alleviate New England’s uniquely high natural gas and electricity costs caused by severely limited natural gas transportation capacity currently serving the region.”
However, the project faced stiff opposition from a coalition of anti-fracking activists, pipeline safety advocates who raised questions about the proximity of a high-pressure pipeline to their homes, sustainable-energy advocates, property owners who objected to having land seized by eminent domain, and environmentalists hoping to preserve wetlands and old-growth forests. Legislators and elected officials responded to voters' concerns.
On April 21, 2016, Kinder Morgan suspended its effort to build the 412-mile (663 km) NED pipeline, citing economic difficulties and lack of "distribution commitments" or customers for the gas.
Likewise, Kinder Morgan's proposed Palmetto Pipeline, designed to go from the Gulf Coast to the Southeast markets, was nixed. Its path would have taken it through 201 miles (323 km) of eastern and coastal Georgia, and drew opposition from local residents and environmental groups. The company suspended work on the project after the Georgia state legislature passed a temporary moratorium on the use of eminent domain for pipeline construction, and commissioned a study to review the project. The company filed an appeal.
Connecticut Expansion Project
Kinder Morgan proposed a 13-mile (21 km) long 36-inch (914.4 mm) diameter high-pressure natural gas storage loop which would include a 4-mile (6.4 km) pipeline spur through Sandisfield, Massachusetts, crossing the Otis State Forest and using water from Spectacle Pond. The company invoked the US Natural Gas Act to have the needed land condemned so they could seize it by eminent domain. However, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts challenged Kinder Morgan in court, arguing that the state constitution's Article 97, which protects designated conservation land, forbids construction of a pipeline through protected lands.
In 2009, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) cited Kinder Morgan for violating safety standards regarding the distance between a natural gas pipeline and a "high consequence area" such as a school or hospital; the pipeline was too close for safe operation in case of a leak.
In 2011, PHMSA cited Kinder Morgan for these safety violations:
- failing to maintain update maps showing pipeline locations,
- failing to test pipeline safety devices,
- failing to maintain proper firefighting equipment,
- failing to inspect its pipelines as required,
- failing to adequately monitor pipes’ corrosion levels.
Also in 2011, the U.S. Department of Transportation cited Kinder Morgan for violations including the company's failure to have and follow written startup and shutdown procedures, and failing to have or use other measures to detect abnormal operating conditions, and proposed a fine of $425,000.
In 2013, the headline "Wall Street Worries About Kinder Morgan’s Safety Record: BC pipeline operator slashes and defers maintenance spending" was a concern to anyone who lived or worked near a Kinder Morgan pipeline.
The Wall Street Journal asked, "Is Kinder Morgan Scrimping on its Pipelines?" after an investment analyst charged the company with starving its pipelines of routine maintenance spending in order to return more cash to investors. Deferred maintenance may account for the high number of Kinder Morgan pipeline accidents in the last decade.
PHMSA's incident reports for Kinder Morgan's onshore gas transmission pipelines show that faulty infrastructure causes 45% of the significant leaks. Failure of the pipe, cracked welds, and faulty pipeline equipment together account for 28.3% of pipeline leaks, and corrosion of the pipe causes 16.8%.
In Texas alone from 2003 to 2016, Kinder Morgan experienced at least 48 "significant incidents" resulting in fatalities or hospitalization, fires, explosions, or spills.
Throughout the U.S. since 2003, Kinder Morgan and its subsidiaries' pipelines (of all kinds) have been responsible for more than 400 spills, evacuations, explosions, fires, and fatalities in 24 states, incurring more than 110 federal enforcement actions. Kinder Morgan's natural gas transmission pipeline accidents caused more than $224 million in property damage.
Some notable examples (including spills in Canada and Mexico):
On April 13, 2001, at Glasco, Kansas, dead vegetation was spotted on a flyover along a natural gas transmission pipeline right-of-way. The cause of the leak was a split in a seam near a girth weld on a 36-inch (914.4 mm) diameter Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America line. The pipe was manufactured in 1960.
In August 2003, in Caddo County, Oklahoma, a Kinder Morgan Natural Gas Pipeline of America failed in a rural farming area about just east of the town of Stecker. A 26" (66 cm) diameter pipe exploded, throwing a 54-foot (16.5 m) long section of pipe 30 feet (9 m) from the ditch. The cause was environmental cracking along the length of the failed section parallel to the longitudinal weld seam.
On April 27, 2004, an underground Kinder Morgan 14" (35.6 cm) pipeline ruptured at Suisun Marsh in Solano County, California, spilling over 120,000 US gallons (454 250 L) of diesel fuel directly into the marsh. The cause was pipe corrosion. The company failed to notify authorities about the spill for 18 hours, another safety violation for which it was later cited. Kinder Morgan was fined $5.3 million for the spill, and agreed to enhance spill prevention, response and reporting practices. The company had 44 spills in 31 months, indicating "widespread failure to adequately detect and address the effects of outside force damage and corrosion," according to an order issued in August 2005 by the U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA).
On November 9, 2004, a Kinder Morgan pipeline in Walnut Creek, California was struck by a backhoe, causing a gasoline spill that ignited in an explosive fireball, incinerating five workers and severely injuring four others. CalOSHA (California Occupational Safety and Health Administration) cited Kinder Morgan for failure to accurately mark and map the pipeline location. In 2005, the California Fire Marshal fined Kinder Morgan $500,000 for its role in the "completely preventable" tragedy. Kinder Morgan agreed to upgrade pipeline inspection methods and improve corrosion control. In 2007, the Kinder Morgan subsidiary was found guilty of 6 felonies in the case and was fined $15 million. The company was assessed another $69 million in civil penalties.
A Kinder Morgan Energy Partners petroleum products pipeline was found to be leaking gasoline into Summit Creek, near Truckee, California, on April 1.About 300 US gallons (1 136 L) were spilled.
In May 2005, a Kinder Morgan Natural Gas Pipeline of America 30" (762 mm) diameter pipe exploded near Marshall, Texas, sending a giant fireball into the sky and hurling a 160-foot (49 m) section of pipe onto the grounds of an electric power generating plant. Two people were hurt, 40 evacuated. The cause was stress corrosion cracking.
On July 22, 2006, near Campbellsville, Kentucky, a Tennessee Gas Pipeline exploded. A 25-foot (7.6 m) chunk of pipe blew out of the ground and landed 200 feet (61 m) away, the pipe twisted and mangled, its external coating burned off. The 24" (609.6 mm) pipeline ruptured due to external corrosion more than two feet (60 cm) long at the bottom of a valley in an area of wet shale, known to cause corrosion on buried pipelines in this part of Kentucky.
On November 11, 2006, a subcontractor on Kinder Morgan’s Rockies Express (REX) pipeline outside Cheyenne, Wyoming struck an existing pipeline, causing a rupture and explosion. Two months after this explosion, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission threatened to shut the project down if REX didn’t improve its "poor compliance record" involving construction activity outside the approved work area.
On November 27, 2006, the Kinder Morgan Plantation Pipeline at Charlotte, North Carolina released about 4,000 US gallons (15 140 L) of gasoline from a Plantation Pipe Line Company block valve on a delivery line into a terminal owned by a third party company.
On July 24, 2007, the Trans Mountain Pipeline, operated by Kinder Morgan Canada, released over 250,000 litres (1572 barrels) of crude oil, 70,000 litres (440 barrels) of which flowed into Burrard Inlet, requiring a C$15-million cleanup) after a backhoe broke the line in Burnaby.
On September 23, 2008, a Kinder Morgan pipeline exploded and burned for more than ten hours at Pasadena, Texas. One person died; another was injured. The cause of this "significant event" was internal corrosion, which caused a spill of more than 5500 barrels of hazardous liquid, with $40,800,000 in property damage. The Pasadena pipeline experienced at least 18 "significant incidents" 2004 to 2013.
In May 2009, near Palm City, Florida, a Kinder Morgan Florida Gas Transmission Company 18" (457.2 mm) diameter natural gas pipeline ruptured in a sparsely populated rural area of Martin Co. and "displaced" about 106 feet (32 m) of buried pipe onto the right-of-way between Interstate 95 and the Florida Turnpike (SR-91). About 106 feet (32 m) of pipe weighing about 5,000 pounds (2 270 kg) was blown out of the ground. The rupture was near a high school that was within the 366-foot (111.6 m) potential impact radius (PIR). Injuries included two people in a car that ran off the road and a Sheriff's deputy treated for inhaling gas.
On July 15, 2009, a pipeline accident at Sylvarena, Mississippi involved Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, Southern Natural Gas and Kinder Morgan in an explosion that killed one person and injured three. The explosion occurred at a natural gas metering station under construction while it was being pressure tested with nitrogen. There was no fire. The workers were "literally right on top" of the explosion; their injuries were the result of pressure, not heat. One was injured when part of the pipe fell on him. The explosion snapped and bent a pipeline connected to a massive separator unit which was slung several yards.
On October 28, Kinder Morgan's Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America above-ground storage tank north of St. Elmo, Illinois caught fire, injuring two workers. Welding caused the tank to ignite resulting in several explosions. Two workers were taken to the hospital.
On November 30, 2010, a 30" (762 mm) diameter Tennessee Gas Pipeline failed in a semi-rural area between Highway 1 and State Road 3191, two miles (3.2 km) NW of Natchitoches, Louisiana, 1/4 mile (400 m) NE of a country club, and 200' (61 m) south of a residential subdivision. Louisiana state police evacuated 100 homes. Pipe cracked: 52.5 inches (133.35 cm) long and about 0.5 inches (1.27 cm) in maximum width. The failure site is near where TGP had a previous failure in 1965, with fatalities. That failure was attributed to stress corrosion cracking.
The Carteret, New Jersey, KMLT had a leak and fire during maintenance work on March 14, 2011. On April 4, 2013, the PHMSA Office of Pipeline Safety issued a Notice of Probable Violation, Proposed Civil Penalty and Proposed Compliance Order (NOPV) after an inspection. In 2013, KMLT paid a penalty of $63,100 and was required to complete pipeline integrity testing and other corrective measures by May 2015.
On August 17, 2011, Kinder Morgan’s Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America had a flash fire and explosion south of Herscher, Illinois. Five employees went to the hospital. Kinder Morgan was cited for pipeline and workplace safety violations.
On November 16, 2011, near Glouster, Ohio, a weld failed on a Kinder Morgan Tennessee Gas Pipeline 36" (914.4 mm) diameter pipe; the leak exploded, leaving a blast crater 30 feet (9.1 m) across and 15 feet (4.6 m) deep. Three homes were destroyed by the fire. The leak was caused by "displacement produced by a landslide and an inadequate understanding by (TGP) of the influence of the geotechnical threats on the pipeline in this location." A girth weld failed due to earth movement, inadequate design, materials or workmanship, exceeding operational limits & gaps in integrity management.
In May 2012, at Arvin, California, a Kinder Morgan El Paso Natural Gas pipeline's relief valves and pipe supports failed, causing an explosion that damaged the Mojave facility and a surrounding cherry orchard, causing "the complete structural failure of the overpressure protection support system."
In June 2012, in Gray County, Texas, a Kinder Morgan Natural Gas Pipeline of America 26" (660.4 mm) diameter pipe failed at Compressor Station 154, Mile Post 52, 4 mi. (6.4 km) east of Laketon. The gas ignited, blowing a crater 30 feet (9.1 m) in diameter and burning 2 acres (8 100 m²) of agricultural land as well as two 500-US gallon (1 893 L) plastic tanks used to store liquid fertilizer plus two telephone poles and transformers. State Highway 152 was closed for several hours. The cause was a 50-foot-long (15.2 m) longitudinal rupture in the pipe.
On September 18, 2012, 22 workers died when a gas leak from a Kinder Morgan pipeline at Reynosa, Tamaulipas, Mexico sparked an explosion which became a fireball that overtook workers running for their lives, lead plaintiff Javier Alvarez del Castillo said in his fourth amended complaint. "They were engulfed in fire that burnt and singed every inch of skin from their head to their ankles, taking every bit of hair from their head, laying the plaintiffs 'skinless,' like skeletons bare to the bones, with in most cases only their footwear attached to the only portion of their body not reduced to skeleton." He blamed Kinder Morgan for not adding enough of the odorant methyl mercaptan to the gas. (Natural gas is odorless, so energy companies add the sulfur compound to make leaks smelly and therefore noticeable.) "A gas company may be liable if facts show that it fails to act reasonably after having notice of defects in the pipes through which gas flows," the ruling states, citing the Texas appellate court case Entex, a Division of NorAm Energy Corp. v. Gonzalez. On July 13, 2016, a U.S. Federal Court ruled that only Kinder Morgan and not any of the other companies originally sued by plaintiffs’ groups should face the charges of gross negligence and negligence. The cause of the leak was a valve that apparently failed as workers performed routine testing, but gaps remain in what is known about the events that led up to the Reynosa explosion.
On December 26, 2012, in West Melbourne, Florida, a Kinder Morgan Florida Gas Transmission Company pipeline exploded in a pasture. The blast ejected a 20-foot (6.1 m) section of 20" (508 mm) diameter pipe which landed about 15 feet (4.6 m) from the rupture.
On June 18, 2013, in Louisiana, a Kinder Morgan Florida Gas Transmission Company 30" diameter pipeline ruptured and exploded before dawn, jolting residents out of their beds in a rural, wooded area of Washington Parish. No one was seriously hurt but 55 homes were evacuated. The blast knocked down trees in an area about 200 yards across and the fire burned those within another 300 yards. "The ground around the crater is completely bare. The dirt around it is just like it had been cooked in a kiln," and an 80-foot (24.4 m) section of pipe was destroyed.
On May 17, at Port St. John, Florida, Kinder Morgan's 36" Florida Gas Transmission pipeline ruptured, forcing evacuation of 7 homes and halting train traffic through Brevard Co. for 3 hours near the Florida Power & Light plant. Florida Gas Transmission workers searched for a leak when pressure dropped in the line. Homes, vehicle & train traffic were reopened after the remaining gas escaped from the pipe. This pipeline failure caused $177,321 in property damage.
On June 26, 2014 near East Bernard, Texas, a gas pipeline next to the Kinder Morgan compressor plant blew out, destroying the road and setting a truck on fire at FM 1164 just south of Highway 59. Flames shot as high as 150 feet (46 m).
On July 23, at Milledgeville, Georgia, Midway Elementary School faculty and staff were evacuated due to a fire caused by a gas leak at the nearby Southern Natural Gas Company tap station. Fire rescue personnel closed Highway 441 South for an hour. Precautionary measures were taken so pipe wouldn't rupture under the road while Southern Natural Gas tried to determine the cause of the leak, which was thought to be failure in a valve or regulator. No injuries were reported.
On January 16, a transmission pipeline operated by KM subsidiary Southern Natural Gas had an equipment malfunction in Walthall County, Mississippi.
On February 10, in Hopkinton, Massachusetts, the temperature caused "natural force damage" to a Kinder Morgan / Tennessee Gas Pipeline.
On March 2, a Tennessee Gas Pipeline leaked due to equipment failure, causing $281,890 of property damage in Marshall, Mississippi.
On March 20, a pipe owned by KM subsidiary Southern Natural Gas failed in Rolling Fork, Mississippi, and on March 23, another of that subsidiary's pipes failed due to equipment malfunction in Augusta, Georgia.
On April 13, in Hutchinson County, Texas, KM subsidiary Natural Gas Pipeline of America failed due to environmental cracking, causing a fire and $455,000 in property damage. The 30-inch (762 mm) diameter pipe exploded; a 60-foot (18.3 m) section and a 30-foot (9.1 m) section of pipe were blown about 60 feet (18.3 m) and 100 feet (30.5 m), respectively, from the failure site. NGPL’s pipeline systems in the area have a history of stress corrosion cracking and had also leaked in 2003 and 2012.
In June, Marshall, Texas experienced its third leak from the Natural Gas Pipeline of America.
On August 3, two persons were injured in Falfurrias, TX when a natural gas pipeline operated by Kinder Morgan ruptured along a seam and exploded. The blowout resulted in a 70-foot by 30-foot (21.3 × 9.1 m) crater 350 feet (107 m) from a house; the longitudinal split in the pipe was about 55 feet (17 m) long. The metallurgical report concluded that the cause was high ph stress corrosion cracking. The pipe had been manufactured in 1947.
On August 8, an El Paso Natural Gas relief valve released gas at the Monument compressor station near Hobbs, New Mexico. Investigation showed that the relief valve actuated and vented gas for several hours. The cause of the equipment failure could not be determined, but contributing to the incident was the controller’s misunderstanding of what constitutes abnormal operation.
In December 2015, Kinder Morgan's Tennessee Gas Pipeline transmission line leaked when equipment failed, causing $12,482 in property damage, in West Winfield, New York.
In 2016, Kinder Morgan Liquid Terminals, LLC experienced nine spills in New Jersey and Texas due to pump failure, incorrect valve operation, external and internal corrosion, overfilling the tank, and assorted failures of equipment and connections which did more than $1.5 million in property damage.
On January 6, the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection fined Kinder Morgan $745,000 for violations at two Philadelphia liquid storage facilities, including a spill of 8,000 US gallons (30 280 L) of fuel-grade ethanol from an aboveground storage tank at the Kinder Morgan Liquids Terminal on the Delaware River, as well as allowing storm water to accumulate in containment dikes surrounding storage tanks.
On February 14, in Charlton, Massachusetts, Kinder Morgan's Tennessee Gas Pipeline transmission line failed due to a malfunction of control or relief equipment, releasing $16,598 worth of gas.
On July 18, 2016, a Kinder Morgan Tejas gas pipeline operated by Energy Transfer Partners exploded at the gas plant on the Santa Gertrudis Division of the King Ranch, in Texas, about six miles (9.7 km) south of State Highway 141, just before 9:30 a.m.. According to the PHMSA incident listing, the cause was “other outside force damage.” The company lost only $380,000 in product, but the total loss in property damage was $13,842,000.
On August 1, 2016, a lightning strike in rural Powell County, Kentucky, impacted Kinder Morgan’s compressor station on its Tennessee Gas Pipeline system in Clay City. The company’s emergency shut down system was activated and natural gas was safely vented into the air, but a fine mist of oil was spewed onto the nearby highway and land. As a precaution, the road was closed to lay down sand to absorb the lubricant. A nearby homeowner's yard, vehicles and pool were covered in the substance. According to PHMSA, property damage was $138,750.
On October 8, 2016, IN Jenkins County, Georgia, a Kinder Morgan Southern Natural Gas pipeline leak which "sounded like a jet engine times ten," exploded at 2:30 p.m. and was still leaking 3 hours later. Highway 25 was closed; visitors at Magnolia State Park were evacuated; the nearby airport was notified, and a warning was sent to Norfolk Southern to stop a train. PHMSA says the cause was environmental cracking due to a weld or pipe failure that caused $353,000 in property damage.
On February 15, 2017, a Kinder Morgan Tejas pipeline exploded in rural Refugio County, Texas, between Victoria and Corpus Christi, just after midnight; the flames were visible 50 miles (80 km) away. Refugio County Chief Deputy Sheriff Gary Wright said the explosion occurred at an apparent weak point in the pipeline that must have required maintenance, but KM disputed the issue. Residents as far as 60 miles (97 km) away thought it was an earthquake, while others described it as "a thunder roll that wouldn’t end.”. The 36" diameter pipeline the explosion site was 18 miles (29 km) north of Refugio and eight miles (13 km) east of Highway 77. According to the PHMSA incident listing, the cause was unknown, but the explosion and resulting fire caused $525,197 in property damage.
On November 20, 2017, Kinder Morgan’s Connecticut Expansion Project's pipeline test at the Agawam, Massachusetts Compressor Station discharged 16,500 US gallons (62 460 L) of hazardous wastewater onto the soil of the compressor station yard; the wastewater contained heavy metals, lead, and carcinogens such as tetrachloroethylene and phthalate. Kinder Morgan blamed subcontractor Henkels & McCoy for an operator error.
On November 29, 2017, in Richmond, Massachusetts, a Kinder Morgan pipeline overpressure triggered a relief valve to open, releasing natural gas for a blowdown that lasted 40 minutes and sounded like a jet engine. The gas escaped into a nearby residential neighborhood. Firefighters responded to the leak and closed the road. When contacted, pipeline personnel had no idea that there was a problem, and offered no reason for their equipment malfunction.
On December 5, 2017, 59-year-old Rory Miller and his son, 30-year-old Ryan Miller were killed when a buried KM gas pipeline exploded in Lee County, Illinois. The farm workers were attempting to free a tractor that got stuck laying field tile and inadvertently struck a buried 20" (508 mm) diameter natural gas pipeline. The explosion was on Kinder Morgan’s Natural Gas Pipeline Company of America, a 9,200-mile (14 800 km) long system that transports natural gas from Texas and Louisiana to Chicago. Kinder Morgan issued a force majeure notice on the pipeline indicating a “third-party strike” as the cause of the explosion.
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