Colonial Pipeline says that its pipeline is now operating at normal service, delivering millions of gallons of products per hour.
The pipeline was subject to a ransomware attack on 7 May 2021 by Russian group DarkSide, shutting its operations completely and triggering panic buying and fuel shortages in states along the US east coast. Colonial Pipeline manually restarted Line 4 of the pipeline on 10 May 2021, before a full restart on 12 May 2021. The company announced the return to normal operations on 15 May 2021.
The company thanked the White House, the US Department of Energy, the US Department of Transportation and its Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and the US Department of Homeland Security, as well as state and local agencies for their assistance during the crisis and ongoing support.
‘Since this incident began, we have been clear that our focus was on the safe and efficient restoration of service to our pipeline system. That is what we have achieved through the commitment and dedication of the many Colonial team members,’ says Colonial Pipeline in a statement posted on Twitter, adding: ‘We recognize the critical nature of our system to millions of Americans. We safely deliver ~100 million gallons of fuel per day and around 36 billion gallons per year to markets across our operational footprint. Colonial has and will continue to put safety and system integrity first and will invest the required resources to maintain safe and reliable operations of our pipeline.’
It says that maintaining the safety and integrity of its pipelines is its top priority, and it has invested US$1.1 billion (€900 million) in system integrity and preventative maintenance in the past five years, as well as investing ‘meaningfully’ in IT and cyber security, increasing spending by 50% since 2017 and the appointment of a new chief information officer.