Pipeline transportation safety investigation P20H0023

Updated in August 2020: This investigation is in the report phase.

Table of contents

Release of crude oil

Trans Mountain Pipeline ULC
Sumas Pump Station
Abbotsford, British Columbia

The occurrence

On , at approximately 11:20 p.m. MST, the Trans Mountain Pipeline released crude oil from the Sumas pump station located near Abbotsford, British Columbia. The pipeline was shut down, and crews were dispatched to investigate. A 1-inch pipeline fitting has been identified as the source of the leak. No product was observed outside of company property. There were no injuries. The TSB is investigating.


Media materials

Deployment notice

2020-06-13

TSB deploys an investigator to a crude oil spill at a pump station near Abbotsford, British Columbia

Richmond, British Columbia, 13 June 2020 — The Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) has deployed an investigator to the site of a crude oil spill at a pump station that occurred near Abbotsford, British Columbia. The TSB will gather information and assess the occurrence.



Investigation information

Map showing the location of the occurrence




Investigator-in-charge

Photo of Jennifer Philopoulos

Jennifer Philopoulos has 15 years of experience in the Oil and Gas industry. She joined the TSB in 2015 as a pipeline engineering expert and senior investigator based out of the Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, regional office. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Metallurgical Engineering from Dalhousie University.

Prior to joining the TSB, Ms. Philopoulos began her career with Shell at their Oil Sands Upgrading facility, as a site materials and corrosion engineer. Most recently, she has worked as a consulting engineer, providing materials and corrosion expertise to the Oil and Gas industry.

Her experience has focused on corrosion assessments evaluating the conditions of materials in refineries and pipelines in order to prevent premature failures. This includes performing and developing risk-based inspection programs, preventative maintenance programs and supporting fitness for service assessments. She has also preformed and supported metallurgical forensic work on various failed components.


Class of investigation

This is a class 4 investigation. These investigations are limited in scope, and while the final reports may contain limited analysis, they do not contain findings or recommendations. Class 4 investigations are generally completed within 220 days. For more information, see the Policy on Occurrence Classification.

TSB investigation process

There are 3 phases to a TSB investigation

  1. Field phase: a team of investigators examines the occurrence site and wreckage, interviews witnesses and collects pertinent information.
  2. Examination and analysis phase: the TSB reviews pertinent records, tests components of the wreckage in the lab, determines the sequence of events and identifies safety deficiencies. When safety deficiencies are suspected or confirmed, the TSB advises the appropriate authority without waiting until publication of the final report.
  3. Report phase: a confidential draft report is approved by the Board and sent to persons and corporations who are directly concerned by the report. They then have the opportunity to dispute or correct information they believe to be incorrect. The Board considers all representations before approving the final report, which is subsequently released to the public.

For more information, see our Investigation process page.

The TSB is an independent agency that investigates air, marine, pipeline, and rail transportation occurrences. Its sole aim is the advancement of transportation safety. It is not the function of the Board to assign fault or determine civil or criminal liability.

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