Transportation of Hazardous Chemicals Institution Essay

Total Length: 1997 words ( 7 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 6

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This is because most of the time, these pipelines run through underground where they are rarely disturbed (Office of Technology Assessment, n.d). Secondly, pipeline transportation is characterized by absence of freight loss in transit and since it operates in all weather and is therefore reliable. Loading and unloading labor and costs are mechanized and thus lowered. Packaging is not usually done in pipeline transportation and therefore packaging costs are recovered as well. The pipes run through known isolated locations and it is therefore a safe, continuous method of transportation that ensures maximum space utilization and low energy consumption. It is economical and dependable particularly to the strategic areas and also provides a long-term infrastructural option. Due to the continuous nature of this transportation, large amounts of chemicals can be transported within a short time an in the process, difficulties of handling large amount of goods by rail can be solved by pipeline transportation (Office of Technology Assessment, n.d). Research over the recent few years has shown that cost of transporting liquids through pipeline is one third of the cost used in rail transportation.

There are some disadvantages however, of transportation of these chemicals through pipelines. Leakages in the pipelines can sometimes cause great pollution to soil and water (Raven, 2011). Pollution of drinking water by these harmful chemicals poses direct danger to humans who might be depending on this water. Soil pollution also causes great risk to soil life and by extension, human life. In the event of fire, small leaks can cause great destructions in form of life loss and destruction of property.
Too much carbon dioxide emissions, from these pipes into the atmosphere cause pollution of air bringing adverse effects on human, animal and plant health (Smith & Petley, 2009). In addition, initial costs to construct these pipelines and maintain them are very high. In case of undetectable leakages, companies can make great losses in terms of chemicals. Flammable liquids and gases are the most suitable class to be transported by this mode of transport.

In conclusion, dangerous chemicals like explosives and flammable substances should be transported by means which reduce their ability to explode and cause fire which in this case is railway transport. Depending on the urgency of transportation, air transport favors small quantities of chemicals that are expensive. Flammable liquids can also be transported by pipeline transportation and less hazardous chemicals should be transported by road.


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