Saboteura have blasted a hole in a section of the Trans-Alaska crude-oil pipeline near Fairbanks in Alaska, forcing its closure.
AERIAL VIEW: Pipeline.
AV: Repair work undeway on pipeline. (3 SHOTS)
AV PAN ALONG: Pipeline showing vehicles and general terrain.
The pipeline is owned by eight major international oil companies operating in the 200 square mile (520 square kilometre) North Slope Field. In its first three months, it was closed a reported five times because of a nitrogen leak, fires and explosion, a damaged valve and inadequate welds on the line inside the terminal area.
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Background: Saboteura have blasted a hole in a section of the Trans-Alaska crude-oil pipeline near Fairbanks in Alaska, forcing its closure.
SYNOPSIS: This was the second act of sabotage to hit the 800 mile (1,200 km) pipeline since it opened last July. An oil leak was spotted by a pilot and the oil flow shut down. Troops and police travelled from nearby Fairbanks and discovered the hole and been caused by an explosive device. The hole was only two inches in diametre, but several thousand gallons of oil spilled over four acres of forest land before the flow was halted.
The hole was plugged after five hours and the Alaska Pipeline Service Company hoped to have oil flowing again by mid-day on friday (17 February).
The normal flow through the lines which runs from Prudhoe Bay in the north to a terminal at Valdes is 740,000 barrels a day. Last July a similar bomb attack on the line damaged only insulation. The pipeline was opened after long legal battles with environmentalists. It is not known who was responsible for the attacks.