In This Issue

Pipeline Safety: Mechanical Damage Technical Workshop

[Docket No. PHMSA-2005-23198]

PHMSA and the National Association of Pipeline Safety Representatives (NAPSR) are hosting a workshop to address pipeline safety issues with mechanical damage. This workshop will provide a forum to share information on mechanical damage among pipeline operators, state agencies, technical experts, and the public. Workshop attendees will discuss and see existing and future technology used to prevent, detect and characterize mechanical damage. Participants will discuss and learn about prevention, detection, and characterization technologies for mechanical damage. This information will aid PHMSA in coordinating actions to address the problems mechanical damage poses in operating natural gas and hazardous liquid pipelines. To facilitate meeting planning, advance registration is strongly encouraged. Please visit the Meeting Registration and Document Commenting web page ( PHMSA will post details about the meeting.

Mechanical damage from third-party intrusion and latent defects caused during pipeline construction remains a leading cause of major pipeline incidents. Mechanical damage defect types are commonly identified as denting, metal loss, metal deformation, and cracking. Several existing technologies are in practice to prevent, detect and characterize damage to pipelines. Regulators, operators, and commercial vendors have varying levels of confidence in these technologies.Several organizations fund or conduct research addressing mechanical damage technology. The development of mutual technology goals will lead to aligning resources, better synergy, and better dissemination of information about new technologies. This will promote pipeline safety across the industry. The workshop aims to identify confidence levels with existing technologies, build research synergy, and gauge the state of our efforts to address mechanical damage.

PHMSA will hold the meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2006, from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Wednesday, March 1, 2006, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Houston Marriott Westchase, 2900 Briar Park Drive, Houston, Texas 77042. The telephone number for hotel reservations is (713) 978-7400 or (800) 452-5110. PHMSA has reserved a room rate of $92 per night for the first 100 reservations for both Monday, Feb. 27 and Tuesday, Feb. 28. Mention the Department of Transportation/PHMSA or the Mechanical Damage Technical Workshop when speaking with the hotel. The hotel must receive reservations by attendees on or before, Feb. 13, 2006.