Small release of cold natural gas at Gate terminal + more info
8 September 2011
During maintenance works on one of the jetties of Gate terminal a small amount of natural gas was released.
During maintenance works on one of the jetties of Gate terminal a small amount of natural gas was released. This caused a visible white cloud at the jetty. The condensation of air humidity following the contact with the cold gas caused this cloud. The cloud itself does not contain any poisonous substances and there was no danger for the neighborhood. In coordination with the authorities the port for a while stopped ship movements in the immediate surroundings of the terminal at the Maasvlakte. At 1 p.m. the release of gas was stopped and at 1.15 p.m. ship movements resumed.
Frequently Asked Questions
What happened at Gate terminal on 8th September 2011?
When working on one of the jetties of Gate terminal a limited amount of cold natural gas was released. This created a white cloud above the jetty. At the time of the incident no ship was present at the Gate jetties.
How did the leak begin?
Caused by a human error a valve was opened, whereby cold natural gas temporary has escaped.
How could this happen in a new terminal?
It was not a technical failure but a human error. Additional measures are taken to prevent this in future.
How did the white cloud arise?
The white cloud was caused by the condensation of air humidity following the contact with the cold gas.
Contained the cloud toxic substances?
No, the white cloud contained no toxic substances.
Did the white cloud consist of natural gas?
The white cloud partly consisted of natural gas, but the further away from the outflow source, the smaller the share of natural gas, since natural gas is much lighter than air and evaporates rapidly vertically in the atmosphere.
Was there a danger to the environment?
No, at no time there was a danger to the environment, the natural gas never came further than a dozen meters from the Gate jetty and was evaporated above the own LNG channel.
Have there been personal injuries during this incident?
No personal injuries were occurred.
Was there a risk of fire or explosion?
There was at no time a risk of fire or explosion, the Gate area itself has no ignition sources and the natural gas never came outside the Gate area.
Why was the Beer channel closed by the Port Authority?
As precaution the port authority briefly shut down traffic in the immediate vicinity of the terminal on the Maasvlakte. The port authority soon released the port when it emerged that there was no danger.
Will there be further research into the cause of this incident?
Yes. An immediate investigation has started on 8th September by Gate terminal how this incident could have happened and how to avoid repetition. Controls will take place by the Rijnmond region authorities.