In This Issue

PHMSA Grants Compliance Deadline Extension for the Recent Plastic Pipeline Rule

On November 20, 2018, PHMSA issued a final rule that amended the federal pipeline safety requirements for the design, construction, and maintenance of plastic piping systems used in the transportation of natural or other gas (83 FR 58694). Subsequently, the American Gas Association (AGA) submitted a Petition for Reconsideration, requesting that PHMSA extend the compliance deadline for certain regulations and exempt mechanical fittings with nominal pipe sizes of 4 inches or greater from 49 CFR 2.281(e)(4). 

AGA requested an additional 90 days to implement training and operator qualification programs and work with equipment suppliers, and an additional six months to comply with certain provisions that require the development of new programs.  PHMSA notified AGA that the compliance deadlines suggested in the Petition are appropriate and do not compromise safety.

AGA also raised specific concerns about the category 1 requirements for larger diameter mechanical joints between plastic and metallic pipe and the applicability of § 192.281(e)(4).  PHMSA will delay the compliance deadline for category 1 requirements in § 192.281(e)(4) for joints between metallic and plastic pipe with a nominal pipe size of 4 inches or greater, until January 22, 2020.

For a copy of the AGA petition or PHMSA’s response, click here.