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Line Abandonment

The process of taking a pipeline out of service involves more than halting product flow. Before abandoning a line, operators must ensure that it is safe and in full compliance with regulatory and industry requirements.

Abandoning a pipeline is a multi-step process that typically includes disconnecting the line from the product source, removing product, cleaning, and, in some cases, segmenting and capping the line. TDW subject matter experts can guide operators through this process and recommend solutions, from pigs that can push out liquids and clean the pipeline to hot tapping and plugging services that facilitate line modifications.

TDW allows pipeline owners and operators in the Liquids Transmission market to:

  • Select the right tools and services for their unique project.
  • Test the integrity of the line before abandonment to prevent environmental hazards.
  • Ensure the abandoned line is clean and free of product.
  • Leave the abandoned line in full regulatory compliance.



Operators must ensure that a pipeline is product-free and clean before abandoning it. TDW offers an array of pigging solutions to help Liquids Transmission operators accomplish these objectives.

Liquids displacement pigs:

  • UNISPHERE™ pig Designed to help pipeline owners and operators remove liquids from natural gas lines, this also can be used with liquid or dry natural gas, sweet or sour crude oil, and refined hydrocarbon products.
  • REDSKIN™ foam pig – This oversized foam pig creates a tight fit within the pipeline, making it an extremely valuable tool for moving liquids and batching.
  • OptionAll™ pig Highly effective for displacement, this pig also can be fitted with cups or blades for batching and cleaning.
  • ULTRA™ pig Manufactured from structural grade urethane, the mandrel-type pig is more than capable of moving loads within the pipeline. Its nearly all-urethane design makes this pig lightweight, durable, and easy to handle in the field.
  • X-Pig® multipurpose utility tool – This utility tool performs well in nearly any pigging function, including batching, cleaning, gauging and liquids displacement.

Cleaning pigs:

  • OptionAll™ cleaning pig This pig has proven extremely effective for cleaning. It is constructed with recessed steel bolt and locknut construction to prevent breakups in the pipeline and the related costs of finding and removing debris.
  • VANTAGE® V cleaning pig – This multi-use pig can be equipped with brushes to remove hard, crust-like deposits, urethane blades for removing gummy deposits, scraper discs to clean both hard and soft deposits, and magnet kits to remove ferrous material.
  • PitBoss™ cleaning pig – This is designed to remove soft to medium-hard deposits from internal pits.
  • FJR/JRN cleaning pig – This pig is equipped with wire brushes and urethane cups to remove contaminants and deposits from pipelines.
  • VANTAGE®+ cleaning pig – This multi-use pig can remove hard internal pipe deposits such as mill scale, crust, and calcium deposits as well as thick, soft contaminants including sludge and mud.
  • REDSKIN™ foam pig – It is available in five different configurations, including the REDSKIN RoughRider® pig for removing hard deposits.

Technical assistance is available from TDW subject matter experts for special circumstances or if the path to a solution requires consultation.


Hot tapping and plugging (HT&P) technology offers the Liquids Transmission market industry-proven solutions for safely discontinuing line service – while ensuring that the line is left in full regulatory compliance.

The HT&P process incorporates a high pressure pipeline fitting, valve, tapping machine, and isolation equipment – all working together to provide a safe and proven isolation solution. Once the area of the pipeline that requires work has been safely isolated and evacuated, the line modification can be performed.

TDW isolation solutions play a critical role in this process. The STOPPLE® Train isolation system, for example, uses double block and bleed technology to help increase efficiency and safety during pipeline modification. This approach to line isolation, which only requires a single pipeline tap, reduces costs associated with fittings, valves, welding, and inspection services. The bleed port affixed on the line ensures that any product that bypasses the first seal is contained and evacuated through the bleed port, which helps operators better protect people and the environment.

Whether operators are purchasing equipment to perform their own HT&P jobs or turning to TDW to execute the service for them, they can rely on the company’s broad line of equipment and consumables. TDW engineers and manufactures nearly every component needed for an HT&P project, and TDW tapping and isolation equipment are considered the industry standard

TDW can also locate and access the optimum spot on the line for effective capping, which further reduces risk to the environment. The company’s application engineers are recognized industry experts, ready to assist operators through each project phase – from start to finish.