An oil spill from a trunkline near the city of Omsk in East Siberia has been contained and cleaned-up successfully, three days after the leak was discovered on 27 January, according to Russian state run oil pipeline operator Transneft’s regional subsidiary.
The subsidiary, Transneft West Siberia, said an estimated 380 barrels of oil was lost in the spill, but had “accumulated in a pothole next to the pipeline” and had not passed into nearby rivers.
Around 200 square metres of soil had been polluted with the oil, according to the Russian Emergency Situations Ministry’s Omsk regional unit.
The leak occurred near the village of Lugovaya, about 17 kilometres from a large refinery operated by state controlled oil producer Gazprom Neft.
The Omsk refinery is a monopoly supplier of motor fuels to the Omsk region and surrounding areas, with the closest alternative refinery located about 350 kilometres across the Kazakh-Russian border in Kazakhstan.
Lugovaya is also located less than three kilometres from the shore of the Irtysh river, a key regional water artery and a chief tributary of the Ob river, flowing through West Siberia, country’s largest oil and gas province.
According to Transneft West Siberia, the incident happened following the completion of planned maintenance work on the Ust-Balyk–Omsk pipeline, which was built at the end of the 1960s to carry West Siberian crude for processing at the Omsk refinery.
Transneft and its regional subsidiaries had earlier issued several statements claiming that the pipeline had been upgraded at most of critical locations and regulary inspected.
Transneft West Siberia said its spill response units have completed the clean-up of the incident site, collecting and removing oil-contaminated soil.
“The possibility of oil getting into water arteries is excluded”, the operator said. “Oil transportation is carried out in the normal mode.”