In This Issue

Pipeline Public Awareness Programs: How to Reach Compliance

Do you know how to structure your public awareness program to comply with the new rules that take effect next year? Workshops to guide you through the process will be held Nov. 9-10 in Baltimore and Dec. 7-8 in Houston.

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and the National Association of Pipeline Safety Representatives (NAPSR) will sponsor the workshops, which will offer guidance on how to:

  • Determine the content of public awareness messages
  • Establish delivery methods for public awareness messages
  • Determine supplemental enhancements to baseline programs
  • Evaluate public awareness program effectiveness

Revised regulations require operators of pipeline systems to implement public awareness programs in accordance with American Petroleum Institute (API) Recommended Practice (RP) 1162, Public Awareness Programs for Pipeline Operators, First Edition, December 2003. On June 16, 2005, PHMSA issued a Final Rule Correction Notice (70 FR 35041) to clarify that all pipeline system operators must follow the baseline and, where appropriate, the supplemental requirements of API RP 1162.

Most operators must enhance their public awareness programs to meet the new requirements by June 20, 2006. Small propane and master meter operators have until June 20, 2007, to revise their programs.

To fulfill the Pipeline Safety Improvement Act of 2002, PHMSA issued a Final Rule (70 FR 28833) on May 19, 2005, establishing requirements for pipeline operator public awareness programs. This Final Rule revised 49 CFR §§192.616 and 195.440.

The Nov. 9-10 workshop, which will focus on gas distribution operators, will be held at the Hyatt Regency Baltimore on the Inner Harbor, 300 Light Street, Baltimore, MD 21202. Hotel reservations under the U.S. Department of Transportation room block can be made at 410-528-1234 or 1-800-233-1234.

The Dec. 7-8 workshop, which will focus on hazardous liquid and gas transmission operators, will be held at the Hilton America, 1600 Lamar Street, Houston, TX 77010. Hotel reservations under the U.S. Department of Transportation room block can be made at 713-739-8000 or 1-800-4HILTON.

To register, select the workshop you would like to attend at

For hotel reservations, contact the hotel directly. Both workshops will be web cast and will be available for one month after each workshop. The web cast Internet address will be posted to the registration web page prior to the workshop.

For more information, contact Blaine Keener, OPS, (202) 366-0970,

PHMSA has created a public awareness resource web page at

In addition to providing updates on the compliance review plan, these workshops will provide a forum to share strategies for implementing these new requirements successfully. Participants can learn about collaborative efforts undertaken in different sectors of the pipeline industry to improve both the effectiveness and efficiency of their related programs.

PHMSA and NAPSR will discuss oversight plans. In particular, they will discuss current plans to use a central clearinghouse approach to review public awareness programs. Finally, PHMSA will respond to frequently asked questions. PHMSA will post agendas for the workshops on its web site ( approximately two weeks prior to the workshop.