Explorer Pipeline

Explorer Pipeline Headquarters Location

Tulsa, OK

Our History
Companies Come Together for Big Idea

Explorer Pipeline began with a group of gentlemen from ten different oil companies coming together for a common goal. The competitors set aside their differences to find the best way to get their product to markets across the country.

In the end, eight companies signed on as shareholders in a new pipeline that would span 1,400 miles with a capacity of 720,000 barrels a day. The founding companies were Apco Oil Company, Cities Service Company, Continental Oil Company, Gulf Oil Company, Phillips Petroleum Company, Shell Oil Company, Sun Oil Company and Texaco, Inc.

Vision to Persevere Through Industry Turmoil
Domestic oil production began decreasing in the late 1960s. Authorities predicted small Midwest refineries would soon begin dying out. At the same time, companies were discovering petroleum reserves on the Alaskan North Slope and the Department of Transportation was considering new regulations.

Despite these complicating factors, the first product was ready for shipment from Lake Charles, Louisiana, to Port Arthur, Texas, by October 25, 1971. Explorer finished the last leg of construction in the spring of 1972.

The system begins with a 28 inch line in Port Arthur to Tulsa, Oklahoma, and then changes to 24 inches into the Chicago suburb of Hammond. The original pipeline from east Texas to Chicago was built on time and under budget in 20 exhausting months.

The early years were tough as economic factors justifying the pipeline changed. Lofty expectations about volumes and business didn’t materialize. The Arab embargo of 1973 caused volumes to drop. Additionally, the time it took to move product from the Gulf Coast to Chicago increased dramatically.

Innovation Fuels Turnaround Story
In search of ways to use pipeline capacity, Explorer made the bold move to transport both crude oil and refined products.

No other large-diameter pipeline had ever successfully batched and moved refined products and crude in the same pipeline. Quality control was critical, and mixing products and crude was difficult.

Using a keen blend of technology, determination and horsepower, Explorer pioneered the process. Many companies replicate our method to this day.

Determination Brings Results
By 1977, Explorer’s hard work began paying off as its bottom line moved toward the black. In 1984, our company moved 166 million barrels per year and the first dividend was on the horizon. Another milestone occurred April 13, 2001, when we shipped the four billionth barrel on our pipeline. On September 17, 2016, we shipped our seven billionth barrel.

We expanded our capacity in 2003 by adding new pump stations, storage tanks, power substations and pumping equipment. It marked the largest expansion since the pipeline’s construction. Within nine months, the expanded pipeline was running at capacity.

Our vision, tenacity, and collaboration turned into phenomenal growth and success. Today, Explorer transports gasoline, diesel, fuel oil and jet fuel to more than 70 major cities in 16 states. It spans 1,830 miles and has a capacity of 660,000 barrels a day.

What began as eight different corporate cultures with a common goal to create the safest, most efficient pipeline possible turned into a lasting legacy. The world’s first high-tech pipeline system now enjoys an established reputation as a leading petroleum products transporter.
Explorer Pipeline Careers
Explorer offers a wide range of job openings at locations across our system. If you’re looking for meaningful work in a family-oriented atmosphere, check out our current openings.

Our Values
- Safety
- Environment
- Doing the right thing
- Being a good neighbor
- Serving our customers’ needs
- Meeting or exceeding all regulatory standards
- Understanding, respecting and appreciating each others’ contributions, perspectives and differences

It’s not always easy, but there’s great satisfaction that comes from knowing we’re a part of something bigger than ourselves. Just like a family, we pull together and support one another in our purpose to responsibly move energy across Mid-America.
Taking Care of Family

At Explorer, we look out for our family with a comprehensive benefits program that helps employees stay healthy, feel secure and maintain work-life harmony. Here’s a high-level look at what we offer.

Insurance Benefits
Our insurance benefits are geared toward keeping employees healthy now and well into the future. We also provide employees and their families peace of mind with financial protection through life and disability insurance. Here’s an overview of our insurance programs:

Medical: Choose from benefits available through UMR and UnitedHealthcare’s Choice Plus PPO Network. Explorer pays for approximately 80 percent of the plans’ total costs.
Pharmacy: Generic blood pressure, oral diabetic, cholesterol medications, and OTC allergy medications are all covered at 100% for employees
Dental: Two free cleanings are offered per year. Annual deductible and $1,000 or $2,000 annual calendar year maximum per covered individual. Explorer pays for 50 percent of the plans’ total costs.
Life: Coverage at 1.5 times annual salary. Voluntary supplemental term-life and dependent life plans also available.

Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D): Coverage at 1.5 times annual salary. Voluntary supplemental AD&D plans also available.
Business AD&D: Coverage up to $500,000 for business-related incidents.
Vision: Voluntary plan covers eye examinations and glasses or contact lenses.
Disability programs
Health and Dependent Care flexible spending accounts
Voluntary accident and critical illness insurance
PrivacyArmor: Voluntary benefit that offers comprehensive identity monitoring, fraud remediation and restoration, identity theft reimbursements and many other services

Financial Benefits

Financial security is important to all of us. At Explorer, we offer the following financial benefits for our employees:
401(k): Explorer matches employee contribution 100 percent up to 6 percent of their annual pay. Pre-tax, after-tax and Roth 401(k) options are available for deferrals.
Employer Non-elective Contribution: Explorer contributes a percentage of pretax contributions to employees based on their age and years of service. There is a three-year vesting schedule on this contribution.
Incentive Compensation Plan

Leave Benefits
To help employees maintain their health and work-life harmony, we offer the following leave benefits:

- Ten paid holidays
- Sick leave
- Volunteer Time
- Paid maternity and paternity leave
One week after six months of company service
One additional week after one year of company service
Two weeks beginning with the calendar year in which the employee’s second company service anniversary falls
Three weeks beginning with the calendar  year in which the employee’s 5th company service anniversary falls
Four weeks beginning with the calendar year in which the employee’s 10th company service anniversary falls
Five weeks beginning with the calendar year in which the employee’s 20th company service anniversary falls
Six weeks beginning with the calendar year in which the employee’s 30th company service anniversary falls

Other Benefits

In addition to all of the above, we offer additional perks to both full- and part-time employees to round out our benefits program. These include:

- Casual dress code
- Employee Assistance Program
- Semi-monthly pay through direct deposit
- Credit union
- Auto/home insurance discounts
- 529 college savings plan
- Safety & Seniority awards
- Tuition reimbursement
- Educational Institution Matching Contributions
- Matching Charitable Contributions
- Safety Program
- Wellness program (health club reimbursement, tobacco cessation, wellness activity reimbursement and more)
- Pet Insurance

Number of Employees in Explorer Pipeline

201 to 500

Explorer Pipeline Revenue

Hidden by employer