The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration’s (PHMSA) Office of Pipeline Safety (OPS) is sponsoring a public meeting on the use of Excess Flow Valves in gas distribution safety lines as a technique for mitigating the consequences of service line incidents. EFVs are devices designed to be installed in gas service lines, the pipelines that carry gas from a distribution main to each individual customer. They automatically shut off the flow of natural gas in a service line when the line is ruptured. Proper operation of an EFV would minimize or eliminate safety consequences from fires caused by escaped gas. EFVs will not shut off flow in response to a leak in a building or in response to a slow leak, such as a leak caused by corrosion or a small crack in the service line. If an EFV activates improperly when there is no line break, i.e., spurious actuation, it would cut off gas flow to the customer. Much work is ongoing and stakeholders have taken various positions regarding the need to require use of EFVs. The benefit-cost analysis does not appear to support a requirement mandating installation of EFVs. This meeting will update the public on the continuing EFV activities and provide interested stakeholders an opportunity to present their positions for and against a requirement to use EFVs. Therefore, PHMSA/OPS encourages interested members of the public to attend the meeting and to share their views on EFVs. These views will be considered in making decisions regarding the mandatory use of EFVs.
The preliminary agenda for this meeting includes briefings on the following topics:
- Operator Case Studies and Experience
- Analysis of Recent Incident Data
- NTSB Position and Recommendation
- Views of State Regulatory Commissioners
- Views of State Fire Marshals
- Views of EFV Manufacturers
- Views of Industry Trade Associations
- A study for the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) conducted by the National Regulatory Research Institute (NRRI)
- Distribution Integrity Management Program role in EFVs
The meeting will be held on June 17, 2005, from 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Ritz Carlton hotel, Pentagon City, 1250 South Hays Street, Arlington, VA 22202. The phone number for hotel reservations is (703) 415-5000 or 1-(800)-241-3333. Attendees staying at the hotel must make reservations by May 30. For further information contact: Mike Israni (PHMSA/OPS) at 202-366-4571; email@example.com, regarding the subject matter of this notice. For information regarding meeting logistics, please contact Cheryl Whetsel at 202-366-4431; firstname.lastname@example.org.