Sunday, September 29, 2013

PHMSA Pipeline Class Location RFI

The Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration (PHMSA) published a notice in Monday’s Federal Register (available on line Saturday; 78 FR 59906-59907) correcting an earlier publication of an ‘NPRM’ on pipeline class location requirements and extending the comment period on that action.

Last month PHMSA published an ‘NPRM’ on the topic. As I noted in my post on the publication it did not really take the form of a notice of proposed rulemaking in that it didn’t actually pose any specific changes to existing regulations or propose  new regulations. It turns out that it should have been characterized as a ‘notice of inquiry’.

This notice of inquiry is intended to gather information supporting a congressionally mandated {§5 Pipeline Safety, Regulatory Certainty, and Job Creation Act of 2011 (PL 112-90)} report on whether integrity management program (IMP) requirements should be expanded beyond HCAs and whether such expansion would mitigate the need for class location requirements. PHMSA is still looking for responses to the questions outlined in the original notice.

The American Petroleum Institute (API) and American Gas Association (AGA) have requested an extension of the time for submitting comments so that they can get information from their member organizations to fully answer PHMSA’s questions. PHMSA has agreed and the new deadline for submitting comments is November 1sth 2013. Again, public comments may be submitted via the Federal eRulemaking Portal (; Docket # PHMSA-2013-0161).

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