Learning from the past to get to ZERO incidents

Canadian pipeline operators are dedicated to raising the bar on the safe operation of pipelines. That’s why every two years the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association (CEPA) brings together industry experts at an Incident Forum – a place where they can share lessons learned with a focus on continuous improvement.

CEPA members have a goal of transporting Canada’s oil and gas with zero incidents. That’s the reason hundreds of industry participants came together on September 26 to share learnings from previous incidents and look at what measures or processes can be implemented to prevent similar incidents in the future.


Focus on industry collaboration


This year, CEPA and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP) are collaborating to open the Incident Forum to all pipeline operators. The American Petroleum Institute (API) is also participating in the event to expand the focus on continuous improvement across North American operations. API is the national trade association that represents all aspects of the U.S. oil and natural gas industry.

“To get to zero incidents, we’ll need excellent systems and processes supported by a strong safety culture in all our member and partner organizations,” says Patrick Smyth, CEPA’s Vice President, Performance. “The CEPA Incident Forum creates a place where people can speak freely and openly about incidents, about how their organizations responded, the lessons they learned, and show what things they’ve changed to prevent future incidents.”


Sharing learnings fosters safety culture and supports positive change


Preventing incidents and building safety culture is a high priority for the industry. A recent industry-wide pipeline safety culture perception survey reached more than 40 thousand employees of 20 CEPA and INGAA (Interstate Natural Gas Association of America) member companies from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

Sharing and learning from past incidents doesn’t stop with the Incident Forum. CEPA, with support from the International Pipeline Conference Foundation, funded a series of podcasts to help prepare participants in the 2019 forum. Providing participants with podcasts discussing past incidents and learnings from them is meant to trigger thinking and questions on key incident management themes, and to generally prepare them to fully engage in the forum.

Enabling industry commitment to continuous improvement is a critical outcome of the Incident Forum. It is one of the ways that Canada’s pipeline operators ensure the most recent lessons learned are shared so that they can continue to safely and responsibly deliver the energy that Canada needs well into the future.

Learn more about how pipeline incidents are managed: