NEB says whistleblower concerns over TransCanada pipeline safety resolved

CALGARY – A whistleblower’s concerns over TransCanada Corp’s (TSX:TRP) pipeline safety practices have been resolved, according to results of a National Energy Board investigation.

The federal regulator said Friday that six of the 16 allegations against the company were partially substantiated, but that TransCanada had taken the appropriate steps to fix the problems. The remaining 10 allegations could not be verified.

The environment and public safety were not at risk and no enforcement action was required, the NEB added. It said the matter is now closed.

The allegations were brought forward in 2014 and early 2015.

The partially substantiated concerns involved, among other things, a pipe that was exposed for a year, the competence of welders working on an Alberta pipeline and a worker failing to wear the proper safety gear on site.

TransCanada spokesman Davis Sheremata said of the six partially substantiated allegations, four involved an infraction of TransCanada’s procedures.

“We want to stress that at any time an issue is brought to our attention — whether by an employee, a contractor, inspectors who ensure quality control for our pipeline, or a member of the public — we act appropriately, proactively and of our own accord, as we did in these instances, to ensure we are correcting confirmed issues and continually improving the safety performance of our pipelines and our operations,” said Sheremata.

The NEB says it has received 23 whistleblower reports since 2012.

Note to readers: This is a corrected story: An earlier version said the pipe that was exposed for a year was cracked, when the damage was actually detected later