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ANPRM on PHMSA Enforcement of Damage Prevention Laws

[Docket No. PHMSA-2009-0192]

PHMSA has published an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) to initiate a rulemaking procedure to establish criteria for determining adequate state enforcement of pipeline damage prevention laws. Under the Pipeline Inspection, Protection, Safety, and Enforcement (PIPES) Act of 2006, establishment of these criteria is a prerequisite should PHMSA find it necessary to conduct an enforcement proceeding against an excavator for violation of one-call damage prevention laws in the absence of enforcement action by the state where the events occurred.

The ANPRM solicits feedback and comments regarding the criteria and procedures PHMSA should use to determine if a state’s enforcement of its damage prevention laws is adequate. These procedures will encourage states to develop effective excavation damage prevention enforcement programs to protect gas and hazardous liquid pipelines, but also allow federal enforcement authority should any state fail to do so.

Persons interested in submitting written comments on this ANPRM must do so by December 14, 2009 to and reference Docket No. PHMSA-2009-0192. PHMSA will consider late filed comments so far as practicable.