DOT Pipeline Compliance News

August 2018 Issue

In This Issue

PHMSA Hazardous Liquid Annual Report Form – Minor Revisions


PHMSA invites comments on its intent to request from the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a revision to form PHMSA F 7000-1.1 Annual Report for Hazardous Liquid Pipeline Systems, which is currently collected under OMB Control number 2137-0614. PHMSA Form F 7000-1.1 is used to report both hazardous liquid and carbon dioxide pipeline systems. PHMSA is proposing two minor housekeeping-style revisions to this form:

  1. PHMSA proposes adding “carbon dioxide” to the form name.
  2. In Part J, PHMSA proposes removing the column for “Rural Low-Stress Pipeline Segments Subject ONLY to Subpart B of 49 CFR 195” because this type of pipeline no longer exists.

The proposed forms can be found on the website. Interested parties are invited to submit comments on or before September 11, 2018 using Docket Number PHMSA-2018-0072. For further information contact: Angela Dow by telephone at 202-366-1246, by fax at 202-366-4566, or by mail at DOT/PHMSA, 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, PHP-30, Washington, DC 20590-0001.

PHMSA Class Location Change Requirements Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking

[DOCKET NO. PHMSA–2017–0151]

PHMSA issued an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) seeking public comment on its existing class location requirements for natural gas transmission pipelines as they pertain to actions operators are required to take following class location changes due to population growth near the pipeline. Operators have suggested that performing integrity management measures on pipelines where class locations have changed due to population increases would be an equally safe but less costly alternative to the current requirements of either reducing pressure, pressure testing, or replacing pipe.

This request for public comment continues a line of discussion from a Notice of Inquiry published in 2013 and a report to Congress in 2016 regarding whether expanding integrity management requirements would mitigate the need for class location requirements.

Persons interested in submitting written comments on this ANPRM must do so by October 1, 2018. Comments can be submitted on the website. Identify the Docket number at the beginning of your comments.

For a copy of this ANPRM, contact Jessica Foley.

PHMSA Pipeline Safety Research and Development Forum

The 2018 Pipeline R&D Forum will be held on September 11-12 at the Hyatt Regency Baltimore Inner Harbor Hotel, 300 Light Street, Baltimore, Maryland, 21202. The forum is a 2-day event held periodically to generate a national research agenda that fosters solutions for the various challenges associated with pipeline safety and with protecting the environment. The forum allows public, government and industry pipeline stakeholders to develop a consensus on the technical gaps and challenges for future research. It also reduces duplication of programs, factors ongoing research efforts, leverages resources and broadens synergies. The national research agenda coming out of these events is aligned with the needs of the pipeline safety mission, makes use of the best available knowledge and expertise, and considers stakeholder perspectives. Specifically, the forum:

  • Identifies key pipeline technical challenges facing industry and government;
  • Disseminates information on current research efforts; and
  • Identifies new research that can help to meet known challenges.

More Information and registration can be found on the PHMSA meeting webpage.

PHMSA, FERC to Sign Memorandum of Understanding to Streamline Safety Review and Permitting Process for LNG Facility Proposals

On July 19, 2018, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), announced that the two agencies have agreed to develop a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that would refine and shorten the permit application review process for proposed Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) facilities.

“PHMSA is pleased to work with FERC to advance critical infrastructure projects that support our nation’s growing energy dominance in the safest and most efficient way possible,” said PHMSA Administrator Skip Elliott.

The MOU will clarify each agency’s respective role in the permitting process for potential LNG projects, and implement procedures into the FERC’s authorization process that will leverage PHMSA’s safety expertise to evaluate potential impact to public safety.

The forthcoming MOU was announced by FERC Chairman Kevin McIntyre during opening remarks for the July 19 Commission meeting at FERC headquarters.

The signature of the MOU will be announced at a later date.

INGAA Interactive Gas Transmission Map Application

There’s a handy map application on the INGAA website if you need to get a big-picture look at where gas transmission pipelines are in the US, by operator and by pipeline system. Click here to view the interactive map showing the main interstate natural gas transmission pipelines (and a few intrastate) in North America. It allows you to click on individual companies and turn on and off various pipelines to get a clearer view of where certain pipelines run. Unlike the public viewer on the National Pipeline Mapping System (NPMS) this allows you to see the entire pipeline route instead of just one county at a time. Thanks INGAA!

Louisiana State Regulations

In June 2018, the Louisiana Department of Conservation updated their regulations to incorporated 49 CFR Part 195.193. Additionally, these regulations were updated to incorporate the latest regulation changes to 49 CFR Parts 191, 192, 195 and 199.

DOT Pipeline Compliance Workshop

SEPTEMBER 11-13, 2018

Join us September 11-13, 2018 in Houston at our corporate office and dedicated training facility for an informative, lively, and interactive workshop on DOT Pipeline Compliance topics. The workshop provides an overview of the DOT pipeline regulations in 49 CFR 191, 192, 194, 195, 196, and 199. It also describes pipeline operations and engineering concepts. It is appropriate for people who are new to pipeline regulations, who could use a refresher, or anyone who needs to know the latest developments in these areas. This workshop will be a combined format, addressing both gas and liquid pipeline topics in parallel. This will eliminate some redundancy of materials, and will allow more time for in-depth discussions for each topic.

Topics to be addressed in the workshop include:

  • An overview of DOT/OPS pipeline compliance requirements
  • State and Federal agency roles for pipeline safety
  • PHMSA Jurisdiction
  • PHMSA Inspections and Enforcement Processes
  • Engineering Concepts and Stress/Strain Relationships; %SMYS
  • Design Requirements
  • Construction Requirements
  • Corrosion Control Concepts and Requirements
  • Operations and Maintenance Requirements
  • Emergency Response Requirements (including spill response planning requirements for liquid pipelines)
  • Damage Prevention Programs
  • Operator Qualification Programs
  • Drug and Alcohol Programs
  • Public Awareness Programs
  • Integrity Management (gas and liquid) Programs
  • Control Room Management Programs

We will also discuss the PIPES Act of 2016; recent Advisory Bulletins from PHMSA; and new, pending and proposed rulemakings.

Each attendee will receive the presentation as well as applicable handouts in a hardcopy notebook, and electronic copies of the applicable regulations and voluminous reference materials including rulemakings, letters of interpretation, and other guidance documents. The workshop will adjourn at 2 p.m. on the third day, for those who need to fly out Thursday evening.

To register for our workshop, click here.

2018 Industry Conference Schedule

August 28-29, 2018
M Resort in Henderson, Nevada

Mark your calendar for Tuesday, August 28th, and plan to attend Chris Foley’s presentation on “Developing a Comprehensive Underground Storage Integrity Management Plan” at 1:45 in the Marche Ballroom. The Western Regional Gas Conference provides a forum for the free exchange of information between natural gas companies and their state and federal regulators, and with associated industry organizations, consultants, manufacturers and vendors that serve the pipeline industry.

August 21-22, 2018
AT&T Conference Center in Austin, Texas

This year the Railroad Commission of Texas (RRC) combines its two largest regulatory conferences, the Pipeline Safety Conference and the Oil & Gas Regulatory Conference, into one event. Registration is now open for the 2018 RRC Regulatory Conference: Environmental Protection, Pipeline Safety and Well Filings. Early bird registration ends July 23rd. For additional conference information and to register, visit the RRC’s website.

September 24-28, 2018
Hyatt Regency, TELUS Conference Center, Calgary, AB, Canada

Members of the pipeline industry from around the world will gather in Calgary for the 12th International Pipeline Conference (IPC 2018). Organized by volunteers representing international energy corporations, energy and pipeline associations and regulatory agencies, the IPC has become internationally renowned as the world’s premier pipeline conference. The conference will begin on Monday, September 24, with tutorial offerings in key areas of interest. Technical Track sessions will begin the morning of Tuesday, September 25, and run through to Friday, September 28. This is a not-for-profit conference and proceeds continue to support educational initiatives and research in the pipeline industry.

This conference frequently sells out, so register today. Early bird registration ends September 3, 2018.

October 10, 2018
San Luis Hotel, Galveston, TX

October 15-18, 2018
Hyatt Regency Austin, Texas
Stop by RCP’s Booth #10

API Storage Tank Conference & Expo will give attendees an opportunity to learn about new and existing industry codes and standards, and to hear about emerging trends from industry experts. This conference offers over 25 sessions addressing the needs of individuals involved in production systems, pipelines, terminals, refining and chemical manufacturing, and storage facilities. Each day focuses on presentations relevant to upstream, midstream and downstream.

October 18-19, 2018
Hotel Monteleone, New Orleans

Each year since 2006, the Pipeline Safety Trust has hosted pipeline safety conferences. What makes them unique among pipeline conferences is the mix of attendees, who come with experience as the affected public, the pipeline industry, and government regulators. All these people come together to discuss barriers to safer pipelines.

October 30-November 1, 2018
The Chattanooga Hotel
Chattanooga, TN

Fundamentals of Pipeline Operations Workshop

SEPT 19-20, 2018

Join us September 19-20, 2018 in Houston at our corporate office and dedicated training facility for this new workshop on the fundamentals of pipeline operations. This 2-day course is designed to give a comprehensive overview of gas and liquid energy transmission pipelines and how they are operated and maintained. It is appropriate for both technical and non-technical personnel who are new to the energy transmission pipeline industry, as well as those who need a broader understanding of pipeline operations and management in general. The course walks through the practical things that a typical pipeline company’s operations organization does on a regular basis to operate and maintain the pipeline system as a whole. Course topics include:

  • Components of a pipeline system (types of pipe, coatings, tanks, valves, pumps, compressors, pressure vessels, pig traps, meters, instrumentation, control systems / SCADA)
  • Operations activities (starting / stopping, batching, managing receipts and deliveries, measurement, monitoring, pressure control, leak detection)
  • Inspection and Maintenance (valves, ROWs, tanks, pumps, compressors, instrumentation, pigging, cathodic protection)
  • Repair (in-service repair techniques, welding, OOS repairs / replacements)
  • Integrity Management (ILI, Pressure Tests, Direct Assessment), including assessment processes, analysis, follow-ups
  • Emergency Response (planning, organization / ICS, drills, response)
  • Public Awareness / Damage Prevention / One Calls

Each attendee will receive the presentation as well as applicable handouts in a hardcopy notebook.

The course involves many hands-on demonstrations and examples using RCP’s in-house Pipeline Flow Loop*. To promote an optimal learning environment, class size will be limited. To register for our workshop, click here .

*RCP’s in-house Pipeline Flow Loop is an engineering marvel (!). It is a working 2” diameter pipeline system incorporating many of the components of a transmission pipeline system including state-of-the-art SCADA control system and instrumentation for flow, pressure, temperature, and volume, as well as automated valves, pig traps, variable speed pump, and more. It also incorporates clear pipe segments so that students can see a pig in operation, see phase separation as it occurs, and understand the importance of elevation change. It occupies 2 walls outside our training room. Students can monitor and control the pipeline from the training room (“control room”), and then step into the hall to see the pipeline in action.

Pressure Testing Webinar – Advantages of Using TestOp®

RCP will be hosting webinar presentations to discuss pipeline pressure testing practices and demonstrate the advantages of utilizing new technology for planning, designing, and capturing real-time data to validate and document whether it was a successful test. The same technology that RCP has used for the past six years to validate our customer’s pressure tests has been greatly enhanced and is now being made available as a web-hosted solution for operators to use themselves.

TestOp® takes the confusion out of pressure testing by providing real-time determination of whether the test segment is experiencing potential issues, such as yielding or air entrapment volume absorption, all while modeling the mass balance relationship of pressures, volumes and temperatures of the test. TestOp® will provide real-time indicators and corresponding data to confirm whether the test is successfully performing to plan or if there might be a small pin-hole leak that would otherwise go undetected before taking the line segment off test. TestOp® generates comprehensive and consistent reports, including a certification letter, pressure test plan versus actual test results, pressure/spike test log, test instrument and pump calibrations, pipe volume calculations sheet, stress/strain and pressure/volume plots as well as upload capability for pictures and other document scans associated with the test.

We encourage any liquid or gas pipeline operator who has upcoming projects that involve replacement, integrity verification, new construction, uprates, conversions and/or reversals to sign up for the 45 minute webinar. Some of the largest and most respected pipeline operators are now using TestOp® because they see the value it brings to their overall pipeline integrity assurance program and we are confident you will too once you have seen it in person.

Mark your calendar and plan to attend one of these sessions or request an individual demonstration for your company at a date convenient to you.

We would welcome the opportunity to discuss our services with you. 


Bill Byrd signature
W. R. (Bill) Byrd, PE
RCP Inc.