NGL processing plant temporarily shut down after explosion

April 24, 2014 By    

Williams Partners LP reported an explosion and fire April 23 at its natural gas-processing facility near Opal, Wyo. No injuries were reported, and the company says the outside of the facility sustained no damage. The incident did, however, damage one of five cryogenic processing trains that comprise the Opal facility. Williams is assessing the damage and determining a return-to-service time for the train.

According to a press release, the facility was shut down immediately and emergency procedures were then activated. First responders evacuated an area that includes Opal and a portion of a highway near the plant was closed. Some local residents were displaced from their homes, and Williams says it is making accommodations for them.

In addition, natural gas gathering from surrounding producing areas is temporarily suspended as a result of the incident, the company says. Williams is evaluating alternatives so natural gas production can resume as soon as possible.

Williams says the Opal facility processes natural gas gathered from wells in the area in preparation for interstate natural gas pipeline transport. It also produces natural gas liquids from the natural gas. According to Williams, the plant has an inlet capacity of 1.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. Recent daily volumes were about 1 billion cubic feet of natural gas, the company says.

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