Payne County Secures Pipeline Intersections

Saturday, March 22nd 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

(Cushing-AP) -- Officials are closing roads around a massive crude oil storage complex in Cushing where many major pipelines intersect as a security precaution during the U.S.-led war in Iraq.

Roads in the Payne County town will be barricaded starting this week to protect the 10 major terminals that provide the oil for futures contracts traded on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Many of the world's largest pipeline companies -- Shell Pipeline Companies, ConocoPhillips, BP and Williams Companies -- operate the terminals with a storage capacity of about 23 million barrels of crude oil.

Homeland security officials consider the tanks and accompanying pipelines of national importance. The tanks contain a substantial portion of U.S. oil supplies.

The Cushing Daily Citizen reported Payne and Lincoln county officials decided to close the roads Thursday.

The paper did not say whether any specific threat led to the decision.

Cushing is about 50 miles west of Tulsa.