FARMINGTON — A Navajo oil pipeline company is inviting local chapter officials to train for pipeline emergencies.

Chapter officials likely would be the first responders on scene because of the rural locations of many of the chapters, according to Navajo Nation Oil and Gas.

"It would help us contain the situation," said Franklin Adakai, a compliance regulatory specialist for the Running Horse Pipeline, which is owned and operated by Navajo Nation Oil and Gas.

Adakai said that officials need to know what to do in the case of an emergency in their community.

The training will be 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. April 9 to 12 at the Nenahnezad Chapter House. It has a maximum enrollment of 30 members and is open only to chapter officials.

While pipeline bursts are uncommon, they can devastate the environment around them if they are not taken care of immediately.

"Our threat to the pipeline is corrosion or third-party damages," Adakai said. "If there was a spill, it would go onto the ground. Then, if there was a wash, it could go into the water sources."

The Running Horse Pipeline, which is about 87.5 miles long, runs under Shiprock, Hogback, Upper Fruitland, Red Mesa, Huerfano, Nenahnezad, San Juan and Aneth Chapters. The pipeline pumps crude oil, which can contain hydrogen sulfide and toxic enzymes, Adakai said, which is why each chapter knows how to manage the substance if it is released.

"We have two pipelines that go under us, so we gotta be prepared for something like that.


Hopefully, it won't happen," said Norman Begaye, Nenahnezad chapter president.

Begaye said several chapter officials will be going through the training, though he already went through it about year ago.

Officials will learn how to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation and apply first aid skills. They also will learn what smells and sights to look if a pipeline leak or burst is suspected. They will learn how to react and who to contact.

For more information about how to register for the training, contact Adakai at

Jenny Kane can be reached at; 505-564-4636. Follow her on Twitter @Jenny_Kane