Transierra is a gas transportation company that owns and operates the Yacuiba–Rio Grande pipeline (GASYRG), 432 kilometers in length and 32 inches in diameter, which transports natural gas from southern Bolivia to the Rio Grande compression station (Santa Cruz), and is part of the gas export system to Brazil. In September 2008 amid a scene of political upheaval, social protests and roadblocks, Transierra suffered an intrusion that resulted in damage to the pipeline, fire in the safety block valve SDV-03, environmental damage and reduced transportation capacity. With all the disadvantages of blocked roads, closed airports and lack of spare parts, fuel and equipment; the damage was repaired and the pipeline was up and running again in 60 hours. Given these circumstances, it became clear that there are sensitive points in the pipeline that are highly vulnerable to the actions of third parties. This paper overviews the actions taken to the light of this new dynamic of social environment in the affected area of the pipeline. Alternatives were analyzed in order to make improvements in the protection of installations and to guaranty operational continuity. This incident forced us to take action to prevent, anticipate and mitigate any malicious action of third parties. The purpose of this paper is to show our experience in the approach, conceptualization, design and fabrication of a prototype that would prevent and obstruct undesired access of third parties to improperly manipulate or damage the proper functioning of the safety valves elements, actuator and its instrumentation, seeking to decrease the degree of risk exposure and increasing the level of safety of facilities.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.