Researchers from the Australian National University are conducting a project aimed at understanding why third party pipeline incursions occur in order to identify ways to maintain the integrity of pipelines and improve community safety.

The research is funded by the Energy Pipelines CRC and undertaken with support from the Australian Governments Cooperative Research Centres Program and the APIA RSC.

‘High pressure natural gas pipelines are in many urban and suburban areas.

‘Yet because they are buried and because there has never been a death or serious injury due to a high pressure gas pipeline leak in Australia, people can take them for granted.

‘Pipeline industry records show that pipeline incursions from people from outside the pipeline industry continue to happen. Third party incursions cause danger to excavators, to the wider public and to critical infrastructure.


The research seeks to determine:

  • how third parties see and think about accidental pipeline violation
  • how third parties understand risk and responsibility
  • whether people working near pipelines have adequate knowledge of the risks.

This research is of significant benefit to the pipeline industry, to utility contractors and subcontractors and to the general public.

If you would like to be involved in this research, please contact:

Dr Vanessa McDermott, The Australian National University

(02) 6125 1995 or M: 0401 827 241

Email: [email protected]

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