In This Issue

Misc Proposed Rules – Gas Pipelines

RSPA is proposing to change some of the safety standards for gas pipelines. The changes are based on recommendations by the National Association of Pipeline Safety Representatives (NAPSR) and a review of the recommendations by the State Industry Regulatory Review Committee (SIRRC). The changes will improve the clarity and effectiveness of the present standards.

Persons interested in submitting written comments on the rules proposed in this notice must do so by January 13, 2003 [Docket No. RSPA-02-13208; Notice 1]. Late filed comments will be considered so far as practicable. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: L.M. Furrow by phone at 202-366-4559, by fax at 202-366-4566, by mail at U.S. Department of Transportation, 400 Seventh Street, SW., Washington, DC 20590, or by e-mail at

The proposed changes include:

  • Modifying the definitions of Service Line and Service Regulator
  • Deleting the second sentence of 192.123(b)(2)(i), as obsolete
  • In 192.197(a), changing “under 60 psig” to “60 psig or less.”
  • Removing the requirement from 192.311 that a “patching saddle” must be used to repair harmful damage to new plastic pipelines if the damaged pipe is not removed
  • Requiring separation between pipe and wire, where practical, and require that tracer wire be protected against corrosion, to prevent underground plastic pipe from being damaged by electrically charged tracer wire and to maintain wire integrity.
  • Amending 192.353(a) to emphasize that vehicular damage is a type of damage from which meters and service regulators must be protected.
  • Amending 192.457(b) and 192.465(e) to clarify the meaning of “electrical survey” and what circumstances make an electrical survey “impractical.” Also, requiring operators to consider all relevant information when using an alternative to an electrical survey.
  • To assure the proper concentration of odorant in accordance with this section, requiring each operator to conduct periodic sampling of combustible gases using an instrument capable of determining the percentage of gas in air at which the odor becomes readily detectable
  • Clarifying the meaning of “correct pressure” in 192.739(c) and “insufficient capacity” in 192.743(c) by cross-referencing 192.201, which limits the overpressure of pipelines protected by pressure relieving and limiting stations.
  • Changing 192.743 to allow operators to use calculations to determine if relief devices are of sufficient capacity without first having to determine that testing the devices in place is not feasible
  • Correcting the conflict between 192.621(a)(3), which allows a pressure as high as 25 psig in cast iron pipe with unreinforced bell and spigot joints, and 192.753(a), which requires cast-iron bell and spigot joints subject to pressures of 25 psig or more to be sealed.
  • Amending 192.517 to require that operators maintain a record of each test required by 192.509, 192.511, and 192.513 for at least 5 years
  • Changing the reference to “this part” in 192.553(d) to “192.619 and 192.621” to specify the sections that limit MAOP
  • Adding 192.605(b)(11) to read as follows: “Responding promptly to a report of gas odor inside or near a building, unless the operator’s emergency procedures under 192.615(a)(3) specifically apply to these reports.”
  • Amending 192.745 to require operators to take prompt remedial action if any valve is found inoperable
  • Amending 192.747 to require prompt remedial action if any such valve is found inoperable, unless the operator designates an alternate valve.

The complete proposed rule is available on RCP’s website here.