Operation & Maintenance

PHMSA has issued a pre-publication copy of its much-anticipated Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) concerning hazardous liquid pipeline safety issues.
Continue Reading Extensive New Rules for Hazardous Liquid Pipelines Proposed by PHMSA

PHMSA has re-issued an Advisory, reminding gas and hazardous liquid pipeline operators of the potential for damage to their pipeline facilities caused by the passage of hurricanes.
Continue Reading PHMSA Advisory Regarding Damage to Pipeline Facilities Caused by Hurricanes

PHMSA has published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), proposing various changes to the natural gas pipeline safety regulations (49 C.F.R. Part 192) to address regulatory requirements involving plastic piping systems used in gas services.
Continue Reading PHMSA Proposes Amendments to Regulations to Address the Use of Plastic Pipe in Gas Service

Regulators and researchers alike have long been trying to accurately estimate leakage rates from natural gas infrastructure, in order to understand the potential effects of such emissions on climate and human health.
Continue Reading New Research Indicates Decreased Methane Emissions from Distribution Pipelines

The Agency announced a public workshop to discuss the voluntary Pipeline Safety Management Systems (SMS) national consensus standard on April 22, 2015 in Houston, Texas. This standard, Recommended Practice (RP) 1173, has been in development by the American Petroleum Institute (API) for some time now as a result of the NTSB’s Investigation of the Marshall, Michigan incident.
Continue Reading PHMSA Announces Public Workshop on Safety Management Systems

PHMSA issued an updated advisory regarding the potential for damage to pipeline facilities caused by severe flooding. Presumably prompted by the January 2015 release to the Yellowstone river in Glendive, Montana, associated with an area of exposed pipeline on the river bottom, the Agency reiterated the nine (9) actions it has set forth in prior advisories to prevent and mitigate damage to pipelines impacted by flooding.
Continue Reading Advisory Regarding Damage to Pipelines from Flooding

PHMSA issued a Final Rule that amends various Part 195 and 192 regulations relating to post-construction inspections, welding, gas component pressure testing requirements, and calculating pressure reductions for immediate repairs on liquid pipelines, among other changes.
Continue Reading PHMSA Final Rule Amends Numerous Pipeline Safety Regulations

As a stark reminder of the availability of criminal sanctions for violations of federal pipeline safety regulations, a pipeline corrosion monitor has pleaded guilty to charges brought under the federal Pipeline Safety Act (49 U.S.C. 60101 et seq.) and faces up to 15 years in prison and $750,000 in fines.
Continue Reading Criminal Plea Serves as a Reminder of Harsh Penalties for “Knowing and Willful” Pipeline Safety Violations

PHMSA published a final rule to amend the federal pipeline safety regulations to incorporate by reference new and updated editions of industry standards, among other non-substantive editorial corrections and clarifications.
Continue Reading Final PHMSA Rule Updating Standards Incorporated by Reference