Almost four years after the Enbridge crude oil spill near Marshall, Michigan, PHMSA issued an Advisory Bulletin urging operators to evaluate their safety programs and implement changes to eliminate deficiencies identified by the NTSB’s investigation of the release.
Continue Reading PHMSA Issues Advisory Bulletin Regarding 2010 Marshall, Michigan Release

Amidst public scrutiny regarding onshore oil pipeline facility response plans (FRPs) and an outstanding statutory mandate to make those plans public, PHMSA issued an Advisory Bulletin regarding FRP requirements at 49 CFR Part 194.  In the Advisory, PHMSA confirms that it will make FRPs publicly available and recommends that operators consider U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) oil spill response regulations when complying with Part 194.

Continue Reading Oil Spill Facility Response Plan Advisory: Plans to be Made Public Increased Reliance on USCG Regulations

PHMSA issued an Advisory Bulletin regarding telephonic reporting to the National Response Center (NRC). 78 Fed. Reg. 6402 (January 30, 2013). The Advisory notes that existing pipeline safety regulations under 49 C.F.R. Parts 191.5 and 195.52 require gas, liquid and LNG operators to report incidents to the NRC at the earliest practicable opportunity, “usually

In the wake of last month’s incident in Sissonville, West Virginia, Senator Rockefeller hosted a Senate Commerce Committee field hearing in Charleston, West Virginia to review pipeline safety. The witnesses included: (1) Sissonville resident Sue Bonham who lost her home; (2) NTSB chairman Deborah Hersman; (3) PHMSA Administrator Cynthia Quarterman; (4) Susan Fleming of GAO;

As required by the 2012 amendments to the Pipeline Safety Act, the Government Accounting Office (GAO) released a report examining the ability of transmission pipeline operators to respond to releases in high consequence areas (HCAs). The report titled, “Better Data and Guidance Needed to Improve Pipeline Operator Incident Response,” concludes that (1) DOT should improve

In response to NTSB Safety Recommendation P-11-9 issued as a result of the Agency’s San Bruno investigation, PHMSA published an Advisory Bulletin reminding operators of their responsibility to notify local first responders (identified as Public Safety Access Point or PSAP) when there are indications of a pipeline facility emergency. Consistent with the requirements under 49

On May 31, 2012, PHMSA released the 2012 edition of its Emergency Response Guidebook, focused on responding to releases of hazardous materials, including pipeline releases, during the first thirty minutes of an incident.  The guide is targeted to emergency responders to assist them in identifying the materials involved in an incident and protecting themselves and

PHMSA issued an advisory that clarifies the need to perform post accident drug and alcohol testing, within the mandated timelines of the regulations, of each covered employee whose performance either contributed to an accident/ incident or cannot be completely discounted as a contributing factor to an accident/ incident. The advisory was issued in response to