On June 14, 2004, RSPA/OPS issued a final rule titled “Periodic Updates to Pipeline Safety Regulations” (69 FR 32886). The final rule amended various sections of the pipeline safety regulations and incorporated the most recent editions of the voluntary consensus standards publications referenced in the Federal Pipeline Safety Regulations in 49 CFR parts 192 and 195. On September 9, 2004, RSPA/OPS issued correcting amendments to the final rule (69 FR 54591). These amendments corrected several inadvertent errors in the final rule.
After the correcting amendments were published, RSPA/OPS received three written comments noting that the correcting amendments failed to correct a punctuation error in the definition of transmission line in 49 CFR 192.3. These commenters contended that this punctuation error could be misinterpreted as creating an ambiguity in the definition of transmission line. Specifically, the commenters contended that the absence of a colon after the introductory phrase could lead to an unintended interpretation that the exclusion for gathering lines was not applicable to the second and third sub-clauses of the definition.
RSPA/OPS never intended the issuance of the final rule or the correcting amendments to result in any substantive change to the definition of transmission line. Moreover, gathering lines have never been included in the § 192.3 definition of transmission line. In response to the comments, however, RSPA is correcting this punctuation error to remove even the potential for any ambiguity or misinterpretation in the definition of transmission line. This minor correction will not result in any substantive change to the definition.