2 Hurt as Chevron Oil Pipeline Bursts
Budi Otmansyah,Ririn Radiawati Kusuma & Bloomberg
Jakarta. A Chevron Pacific Indonesia oil pipeline at Duri field in Rokan Hilir, Riau, ruptured on Thursday morning, injuring two people but causing only a minimal impact on production.
Yanto Sianipar, CPI’s vice president of policy, government and public affairs, said the incident would not affect oil output in Riau.
“We have fixed the leak and oil production is still running well,” he said, adding that CPI began repairing the pipeline immediately after the breach occurred.
Elan Biantoro, spokesman for upstream oil and gas regulator BP Migas, said corrosion was to blame for the pipe bursting, but the damage was not crippling.
“[The pipeline] will back to normal in two days,” he said.
Injured in the accident were Rini, 16, and her 6-month-old daughter, Wanda. They live in Jonson Mangala, a village on the pipeline’s path. Yunus, a villager, said the two were rushed to Chevron’s medical clinic.
Numerous houses in the area were splashed with crude oil that spewed from the pipe 10 meters into the air like a geyser. A passing motorcycle was tossed 15 meters from the road by the force of the rupture.
Adj. Comr. Arif Hidayat Ritonga, head of the Rokan Hilir Police’s investigation unit, said three families had to vacate their homes due to the spill.
Earlier this month, a gas pipeline leak at the Duri field disrupted operations of firms, including CPI and Pertamina.
About 20 percent of the nation’s oil production capacity was shut down during the leak.
After the accident, which forced the closure of more than 1,000 wells, the government said it could not achieve the 2010 state budget target of 965,000 barrels per day of oil production.
The government decided this month to sell 60 percent of the nation’s crude oil reserves, or 7.2 million barrels, to cover the production shortfall.
CPI output has been markedly lower than expected this year, producing 20,000 bdp less than the 384,000 bpd it had been churning out before the September pipeline break, according to Biantoro.
On Wednesday, BP Migas data showed that Indonesia’s crude oil production for October was 9 percent lower than in September. National production in October has averaged 752,534 bpd.