Driver Pipeline Co. Inc., Irving, Texas
Project: UTMB Galveston
Driver Pipeline’s scope of work was to install 22,000 ft of 8-in. steel, high-pressure natural gas pipeline via horizontal directional drill (HDD) from an existing Texas Gas Service regulator station in Galveston, Texas. It was along a stretch of highway that is one of the heaviest traveled roads on the island and created challenges for the public, police and city personnel, contractors and holiday cruise patrons who launched from the Haborside cruise line docks. The project was designed to be installed within an existing Texas Department of Transportation Right of Way, State Highway 275, approximately 80 ft wide with four paved lanes of traffic. The area in which to install the pipe, back of the curb, varied from 6 to 10 ft wide with the existing utilities — including water, sewer, gas and telephone — already in place. Driver’s task was to weld 40-ft joints of pipe into a bore string 300- to 500-ft long, test using Non-Destructive Testing, and once an HDD was ready, pull the section of pipe into the ground and weld it to the section of pipe previously installed. This process was repeated until the entire 22,000 ft of pipe was in place. The pipe was then pressure tested using water and dried. Gas was injected from the station to the West Plant at the University of Texas Medical Branch. This pipeline, along with other plant modifications, will ensure the continued use of the heating systems, cooling systems and electrical generation in the event of a natural disaster, as well as offer refuge to the surrounding community.