With the passing of the Protecting our Infrastructure of Pipelines and Enhancing Safety Act of 2016 (PIPES Act of 2016) in June, and the new deadlines and requirements placed on PHMSA, there have been a handful of pipeline safety rules and policies released by PHMSA over the past few weeks. We wanted to give you a one stop shop to read up on each of these rules. Find a short summary of each below as well as a link to PHMSA's released statement.
PHMSA recently released an Advisory Bulletin on Pipeline Safety: Clarification of Terms Relating to Pipeline Operational Status, Docket No. PHMSA-2016-0075 concerning the idle pipeline integrity management (IM) assessments. The Advisory Bulletin states:
“Owners and operators of pipelines that are not operating but contain hazardous liquids and gas must comply with all relevant safety requirements, including periodic maintenance, integrity management assessments, damage prevention programs, and public awareness programs,”
“PHMSA will accept deferral of certain activities for purged but active pipelines. These deferred activities might include actions impractical on most purged pipelines, such as in-line inspection.”
At New Century Software and Integrity Plus, we take pride in knowing that our teams are comprised of the most experienced and knowledgeable people in the industry. We strive to build our teams with people that understand the nuances of the pipeline industry, and have studied and grown their skillsets over time. This led us to think, how do our customers and others in the industry know they are getting the best solution and service from a qualified team? To help answer this question, we developed a three-part series, How to Spot an Expert. We’ll touch on DOT compliance consultants, risk and integrity management analysts, and GIS experts.
In the first of our three-part series, we’ll be focusing on the realm of regulatory compliance. To ensure safety and reliability, pipeline operators must show due diligence in developing, implementing and documenting pipeline safety programs that meet Federal and State regulations. From our perspective, there are three critical elements that every consultant should provide to help operators achieve their regulatory goals (and if your consultant isn’t doing these … you might want to start asking some questions).