The principle of redundancy in the analysis of pipeline integrity has taken on particular significance in recent years, thanks to the integration and relating of information obtained from various sources, which include, smart pig runs, visual right-of-way inspections and monitoring of the land and the pipeline. This document contains information related to the monitoring and analysis prior to emergency actions taken in the case study presented, located in northeast Colombia, where the effects of mining activity and excess rain during the winter period of 2010–2011 combined.
The integrity information available with regard to background, visual right-of-way inspection, threat and risk assessments, direct monitoring of the pipeline and the analysis of deformation by bending, which Ecopetrol’s Office of Vice-president for Transportation and Logistics (VIT) made at the site, was taken into account. In addition, it includes a description of the interrelationship of such information, the findings in the activities conducted during the attention to the site, for the purpose of identifying the evidence related to external loads exerted by the land in the soil-pipeline interaction, which made it possible to better determine the proposed plan of action.
The redundancy in the analysis of this information makes it possible to more accurately determine the root cause of the problem, the interaction between the phenomenon (external load - geotechnical event) and the pipeline, by which attention was directed in the field and action plans were obtained that better mitigate the threat and guarantee more safe and reliable operation.