On August 14th, the Arkansas State regulations for Chapter 271 – Underground Facilities Damage Prevention were updated. Additions, deletions and modifications were made to the definitions. New language was added to Chapter 14-271-104. Penalties – Civil Remedies. “. . .any person who damages an underground facility and violates this chapter shall be subject to a civil penalty or mandatory training in underground facilities damage prevention, as follows:
- For a first violation in a twelve-month period a person who violates this chapter may be required to undergo training in underground facilities damage prevention according to a training program developed and administered by the One Call Center.
- Subsequent violations within a twelve-month period, the maximum penalty amount under the penalty structure of this subsection shall not exceed $50,000.
- For a second violation in a twelve-month period, the person shall be ordered to pay a civil penalty in an amount up to $5,000 for each violation; and
- For three (3) or more violations in a twelve-month period, the person shall be ordered to pay a civil penalty in an amount up to $10,000 for each violation.
- For those that have been ordered to undergo training listed above, shall be subject to a civil penalty up to $2,500 for each violation if the person fails to complete any of the required training within 120 days from the entry of the order or settlement.
Operators of underground pipeline facilities and excavators, upon violation of certain applicable federal code requirements concerning marking facilities or general waivers as in effect on January 2023, unless excepted under § 14-271-109, and damage an interstate or intrastate natural gas pipeline facility or an interstate or intrastate hazardous liquid pipeline facility, shall be subject to civil penalties in an amount not to exceed two (2) times the amount of property damage to the facility, up to a maximum of $257,664 for each violation for each day that the violation persists, except that the maximum civil penalty shall not exceed $2,257,664 for any related series of violations.
Other miscellaneous changes:
- Working day starts at 7:00 a.m. on each business day.
- Operators shall provide an electronic positive response to the One Call Center.
- Excavators shall confirm through the One Call Center’s electronic positive response system before excavation.
- Excavators may begin excavation before the specified waiting period only if the excavator has confirmed that all operators have responded with an appropriate electronic positive response.
Changes were also made to 14-271-109 Notice to One Call Center – Exceptions and 14-271-110 Notifying operators of underground facilities — Identification of location.
For a copy of the updated regulation, contact Jessica Foley.