Pipeline Integrity Keeps US Moving

The United States is home to the most expansive network of energy pipelines in the world, powering nearly every corner of our nation and aspect of our daily lives. More than 2.6 million miles of pipelines transport 64 percent of the energy we consume every day. This translates to nearly 15 billion barrels of crude oil and petroleum products used to fuel our cars and heat our homes, keep our hospitals and schools open, and keep us connected to one another via cell phones and the Internet.

According to the US Energy Information Administration, since 2011 crude oil produced in the US has increased by 3 million barrels per day. By 2019, the total production of crude oil and other petroleum liquids is estimated to grow from 11.1 to 14.6 million barrels per day.


Petroleum products fuel our cars and heat our homes

And the numbers are continuing to grow thanks to an energy renaissance stimulated by new discoveries and technological advances.


The first network of US pipelines was laid in the 1860’s, and as the population grew and cities expanded, so did the network. But as you can imagine, aging pipelines need regular maintenance and repair just like cars and houses do. The good news is many oil and gas companies have modernization programs in place that regularly assess their pipelines every 5 years, and systematically evaluate, repair and sometimes replace miles of old pipeline. And as regulatory demands have expanded, these programs have expanded as well.

In June 2016 a new federal regulation “Protecting Our Infrastructure of Pipelines and Enhancing Safety” (PIPES) was enacted, with the purpose of ensuring the safe transportation of energy and other hazardous materials. One of the provisions requires regularly scheduled inspections to make sure pipelines are without flaws and have a high level of integrity. Pipeline Integrity Management requires the use of high-resolution instruments such as a “Smart PIGs” to look for anomalies along the pipeline, including small dents, shallow scrapes and corrosion.

The Pipeline Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA) requires a 5-year assessment of interstate pipelines in highly concentrated areas. Pipelines built before 1970 were protected under “grandfathered-in” regulations like the 2011 Pipeline Safety Act that exempted them from inspection. However, this situation is likely to change in the near future.


Willbros isn’t your ordinary contractor, but a specialty energy infrastructure contractor who has created a niche in pipeline integrity management to meet the increasing demand for these services.

We have assembled a team of experts who are experienced in working with in-service pipelines, who understand inline inspection, corrosion mitigation, hydrostatic testing and can handle emergency situations. Whether the aging pipeline needs recoating, specialty fabrication services, reversals or pipe conversion, Willbros will assess, rehab and maintain the pipeline, extending the lifecycle of the asset.

We specialize in:

• Hydrostatic Testing
• System Uprating
• Smart Tool Inspection services
• Make Ready (piggable)
• Anomaly Programs
• Specialty fabrication
• Asbestos abatement
• DOT Replacements
• Pipeline Replacement Programs
• Pipeline Modifications

We have experience in all geographic conditions in the continental US and can handle any job, from large complex projects, to small projects no one else wants to take on.

Our Integrity Maintenance teams have an unparalleled success rate of 100% for meeting the schedule required by the client, and are experts at meeting rigorous safety, regulatory, and operational demands, which save our clients having to pay expensive regulatory fines.

Maintaining pipeline integrity requires expert knowledge, on-going communication, and a high level of trust – all of which defines the Willbros Pipeline Integrity team.

Willbros Media Release Mar9 2017

Willbros Pipeline Integrity Services division performs anomaly digs and replaces damaged pipelines

What does it take to keep pipelines safe? We have 2.6 million miles of gas pipelines in the continental US. See how we maintain pipelines.

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