The cause of the breach on the Druzhba pipeline is not yet known, the route’s operator says
Polish operator PERN has said it’s discovered a leak on the Druzhba pipeline section, which supplies Russian oil to Germany.
The rupture was detected late on Tuesday by automated systems on one of the two strings of the pipeline, some 70 kilometers from the town of Plock in central Poland, the company said in a statement on Wednesday.
The damaged half was switched off immediately, and the other string continues to operate as normal, the company said.
“At this point, the causes of the incident are not known,” PERN said, adding that its staff and firefighters were deployed to the site to assess the situation and secure the area.
There are no grounds to suspect that the leak on the pipeline was a result of sabotage, Mateusz Berger, Poland’s top official in charge of energy infrastructure, told Reuters. “Here we can talk about accidental damage,” he said.
Transneft, the Russian operator of the Druzhba pipeline network, has confirmed that PERN notified it about the leak.
The Druzhba pipeline is one of the largest oil transport networks in the world, spanning some 4,000km and bringing oil from Russia to Ukraine, Belarus, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Austria and Germany.
The leak on the Druzhba pipeline follows explosions that were detected in late September on the Nord Stream 1 and 2 gas pipelines in the Baltic Sea, connecting Russia to the EU via Germany. The incident is widely considered to be the result of sabotage.