Saturday, June 15, 2024

April pipeline thefts soar 94% to a record 1,485 illegal taps

Mexico’s petroleum thieves carry on undeterred, setting a new record for illegal pipeline taps in April.

Theft from Pemex pipelines hit a whopping 1,485 taps in April, up 94% from 763 in the same month last year. Figures for the first four months are also well up this year — a 49% increase over the same period in 2017.

There were pipeline thefts in 21 of the 32 states, and seven registered more than 100.

Puebla has historically seen the highest incidence and last month was no exception; it led with 248.

Veracruz followed with 170, Tamaulipas with 155, Hidalgo 151, Guanajuato 148 and Jalisco 146.

Thefts in Mexico City have yet to surpass 100 but the figures indicate the crime is on the rise: there were 74 pipeline taps in April. In the same month last year there were just 10.

The figures for the first four months of this year are further evidence that the crime is far from being controlled. In January-April 2017 there were 3,467 reported cases. This year the number shot up 49% to 5,176.

An official with a multinational company that provides inspection, verification and certification services suggests that molecular marking might provide a solution.

Álvaro Vallejo Paz of SGS Mexico said such a system can monitor pipeline flow and could help reduce theft, the newspaper El Financiero reported.

There must be controls, he said. “As long as there isn’t control at every level, the harmful practice will continue.”

Source: El Financiero (sp)

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