DOT Pipeline Compliance News

June 2010 Issue

In This Issue

PHMSA Recognizes One-Call Operations

The Pipeline & Hazardous Materials Safety Administration recently measured state one-call programs against the following nine elements of the Pipeline inspection, Protection, Enforcement, and Safety (PIPES) Act of 2006:

  • Element 1 – Enhanced Communication between Operators and Excavators
  • Element 2 – Fostering Support and Partnership of all Stakeholders
  • Element 3 – Operator’s Use of Performance Measures for Locators
  • Element 4 – Partnership in Employee Training
  • Element 5 – Partnership in Public Education
  • Element 6 – Enforcement Agencies’ Role to Help Resolve Issues
  • Element 7 – Fair and Consistent Enforcement of the Law
  • Element 8 – Use of Technology to Improve the Locating Process
  • Element 9 – Data Analysis to Continually Improve Program Effectiveness

The following state programs received the highest possible ratings: Arizona, Georgia, Louisiana, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, Vermont, Virginia. The ratings for all states can be found on the PHMSA Web-site.

PHMSA Publishes Internal Inspection Guidance Materials

Recently, PHMSA posted guidance documents as a result of several Freedom Of Information Act requests. The documents provide guidance and insight for PHMSA inspectors in preparation for and during an audit. The available guidance documents include:

  • Corrosion Inspection Guidance (both 192 and 195)
  • Operations and Maintenance Guidance (both 192 and 195)
  • Integrity Management Inspection Guidance (192)
  • Enforcement Guidance Integrity Management (192 and 195)

If you would like a copy of any of the documents, please contact Jessica Roger.

Pending Audits?

Has the DOT notified you of a pending audit? RCP can provide confidential internal auditing to help ensure that your facilities are up to the agency’s latest standards.
Click Here.

Minerals Management Service Reorganization Order No. 3299

The Minerals Management Service (MMS) has been replaced by three new offices to oversee leases, drilling safety, and fee collection. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar said that energy development, enforcement, and revenue collection are conflicting missions and must be separated. On May 19, 2010, Salazar signed an Order creating the:

  • Bureau of Ocean Energy Management
  • Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement
  • Office of Natural Resources Revenue

A schedule will be developed within 30 days for the implementation of this Order.

The Obama administration replaced the MMS (which was created in 1982) as a direct result of the recent Deepwater Horizon Incident in the Gulf of Mexico. Lawmakers from both parties questioned the MMS’s ability to enforce safety and environmental regulations at the same time it promotes energy development.

Salazar anticipates the new safety office to employ about 300 people. And, he will seek an additional $29 million from Congress for rig inspections and enforcement; including $20 million for examination of oil-drilling platforms in US coastal waters.

MMS news and updates on these new offices can be found at

For a copy of Order No. 3299 for the establishment of these new offices, contact Jessica Roger.

Changes in Louisiana “Dig Law”

Louisiana’s legislature is debating several important changes that will expand the state’s dig law in significant ways. These changes include:

  • Requiring La One Call to accept emergency locate requests 24 hours a day, seven days a week and immediately relay emergency notifications to members with potentially affected facilities.
  • Making it illegal to fail to take precautions to avoid damaging underground facilities. Violators will be subject to stiff fines.
  • Allowing forestry operations to rely on markings for 30 days rather than the current 10-day limit as long as markings remain visible.
  • Requiring members to provide emergency information, including a 24 hour contact number, to the one-call center. Many members already have this information in the system. Mr. David Frey is encouraging members to contact Joanna at 225-275-3700 or 800-584-4274 to ensure their information is there and up-to-date prior to the revised law going into effect.

New York – Emergency Rule on Electrical Bonding of Gas Piping, and Protection of Gas Piping Against Physical Damage

I.D. No. DOS-16-10-00012-EP

The State of New York has approved an emergency rule that amends several existing provisions in, and adds several new provisions to, the 2007 edition of the Residential Code of New York State (the ”2007 RCNYS”), the publication which is incorporated by reference in 19 NYCRR Part 1220, and the 2007 edition of the Fuel Gas Code of new York State (the ”2007 FGCNYS”), the publication which is incorporated by reference in 19 NYCRR Part 1224.

Effective Date: April 2, 2010
The emergency rule will expire June 30, 2010.

The new and amended provisions in the 2007 RCNYS and 2007 FGCNYS:

  • Clarify the situations in which a gas piping system that contains no corrugated stainless steel tubing (”CSST”) will be considered to be ”likely to become energized” and, therefore, required to be bonded to an effective ground-fault current path;
  • Specify that a gas piping system that contains no CSST may be bonded in any manner described in Section E3509.7 of the 2007 RCNYS, in cases where the 2007 RCNYS applies, or in any manner described in Section 250.104(B) of NFPA 70-2005, in cases where the 2007 FGCNYS applies;
  • Require gas piping systems that contain any CSST to be electrically continuous and bonded to the electrical service grounding electrode system at the point where the gas service enters the building or structure;
  • Specify standards for the installation and bonding of CSST, including standards for the size of the bonding jumper, standards for bonding clamp, standards for the place and manner of attachment of the bonding clamp, and standards for separation of the CSST from other electrically conductive systems;
  • Specify standards for protection of piping other than black or galvanized steel from physical damage, including standards for the types of shield plates to be used, standards for determining the location where shield plates are required, and additional standards for protection of piping made of CSST; and
  • Clarify the situations in which section E3509.7 in the RCNYS (entitled ”Bonding other metal piping”) will apply.
  • This rule also provides that the 2005 edition of standard NFPA 70, entitled ”National Electrical Code” shall be deemed to be one of the standards incorporated by reference into 19 NYCRR Part 1224.

Public hearing(s) will be held at: 10:00 a.m., June 8, 2010 at Perry B. Duryea Jr. State Office Bldg., Classrooms 2 and 3, 250 Veterans Memorial Hwy., Hauppauge, NY.

The text of rule and any required statements and analyses may be obtained from: Joseph Ball, Department of State, 99 Washington Ave., Albany, NY 12231-0001, (518) 474-6740, email: The full text is posted at the State website.

It’s June. Have you completed your Public Awareness Effectiveness Evaluation?

The due date for completion of effectiveness surveys for operators implementing public awareness programs is quickly approaching this month. Most plans must be completed by June, 2010 to be in compliance with the regulations. According to API RP 1162, operators should conduct these effectiveness evaluations “no more than four years apart.” The effectiveness evaluation is intended to “assess whether the actions undertaken in implementation (of RP 1162) are achieving the intended goals and objectives.”

RCP can assist you in conducting an effectiveness evaluation based on your public awareness plan. For more information, contact Jessica Roger.

SGA Environmental, Safety & Health, Training and HR Generalist Conference

June 9-11, 2010 in Kansas City

If you plan on attending this conference, mark your calendar for Thursday, June 10th at 3:15pm, as Bill Byrd will address the Environmental Roundtable regarding recent changes to the EPA’s SPCC Rule and compliance deadline. This Roundtable discussion is an ideal venue for environmental professionals to receive updates from industry experts on regulatory and other current issues.

For more information or to register for this or other SGA events, see their website at:

TGA O&M Conference

June 13-16, 2010 in Corpus Christi

Meet us at the TGA Operations Conference at the Omni Bayfront Hotel on Jun 13-16th, in Corpus Christi, Texas. RCP representatives will be attending the conference and look forward to meeting you. Bill Byrd will be speaking on SPCC issues at a breakout session on Tuesday, June 15th, and Chris Foley will be giving a DIMP presentation on Tuesday morning, June 15th.

Click here to check for updates on the conference agenda, registration information and hotel reservations.

PHMSA/RRC Pipeline Safety Seminar June 16 – 18, 2010 in Corpus Christi

The Texas Gas Association (TGA) will be hosting the Texas PHMSA/RRC pipeline safety seminar immediately following their O&M Conference in Corpus Christi. PHMSA will be discussing and instructing on requirements of 191, 192 and 195. The natural gas portion of the pipelines seminar will be on Wednesday and Thursday and the liquid portion will run from Thursday to Friday. Bill Byrd will provide a regulatory overview to liquid operators on Thursday, June 17th.

Click here to check for updates on the conference agenda, registration information and hotel reservations.

Does your facility store emergency containers ≥55 gal on site for the hurricane season?

If your facility stores emergency containers ≥55 gal on site for the hurricane season, this may trigger the need for an SPCC Plan. Also, these containers must be included in an existing SPCC Plan. The containers qualify for inclusion into the Plan if they are intended to be used for oil storage, regardless of whether they are filled or empty. The SPCC Rule states under §112.1(b)(2) that “Any container that is used for standby storage, for seasonal storage, or for temporary storage, or not otherwise permanently closed…” as defined in §112.2. must be included in your SPCC Plan.

RCP can assist you in making this determination and in updating your plans as required. The SPCC Rule compliance deadline is quickly approaching, so don’t waste anymore time. Contact Jessica Roger for assistance or to answer your questions!

PHMSA/NAPSR Public Awareness Workshop June 30, 2010 in Houston

On June 30, 2010, PHMSA is co-sponsoring a 1-day public awareness workshop with the National Association of Pipeline Safety Representatives (NAPSR) at the Intercontinental Hotel in Houston, Texas from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. The workshop will be an opportunity, following the initial four-year implementation cycle, to review the implementation process, identify what implementation strategies have worked well, discuss challenges faced by the pipeline industry, discuss Federal and state regulatory oversight, learn about public interest and need for information about pipelines in their communities, and identify critical elements of a successful operator public awareness program.

Pipeline trade associations, the Pipeline Safety Trust, the National Transportation Safety Board, and pipeline operators will share lessons learned from implementing their public awareness programs based on Federal regulations. PHMSA and state partners will discuss the scope of and timeline for conducting effectiveness evaluations. PHMSA and state partners will use the results from this event, in addition to existing inspection activities, to further develop programs for evaluating pipeline operator public awareness programs. The workshop will be webcast.

Click here to view the preliminary agenda and register for the workshop or webcast.

API Public Awareness Workshop July 1, 2010 in Houston

API has scheduled an additional ½ day meeting on public awareness on July 1, 2010. It is intended to follow the PHMSA/NAPSR Public Awareness Workshop (scheduled for June 30th) and will be held at the same venue, the Intercontinental Hotel in Houston, TX.

The purpose of this workshop is to provide a forum for operators to discuss challenging issues in public awareness and damage prevention. The agenda includes presentations on the revisions to Recommended Practice (RP) 1162 and findings from a 2007 and 2009 industry survey of stakeholders. During the scheduled breakout session, operators will share their experiences in measuring the effectiveness of their programs and implementing enhancements.

The workshop is designed for pipeline company personnel who are responsible for implementing, evaluating and enhancing their company’s public awareness program. Vendors currently under contract with a pipeline operator to implement an operator’s program are also invited to attend.

Additional workshop information and registration details will be posted the week of June 7th on the API website.

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