Responding to a growing number of serious pipeline ruptures with devastating environmental effects on land and water, the U.S. Department of Transportation's Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) announced proposed regulations to require that all hazardous liquid pipelines have a system for detecting leaks and establish a timeline for inspections of affected pipelines following an extreme weather event, natural disaster or operator negligence.
"Hazardous liquid pipelines crisscross the country and pipeline failures can have profound impacts on local communities and the environment," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. "This proposed rule is an important step forward to enhance safety, and protect people and the environment."
According to PHMSA Administrator Marie Therese Dominguez, "the proposed rule would significantly change the way operators manage risk and promote the safe operation of the almost 200,000 miles of hazardous liquid pipelines in the United States. The new requirements would strengthen the standards that determine how operators repair aging and high-risk infrastructure, increase the quality and frequency of tests that assess the condition of pipelines, and require that all hazardous liquid pipelines have a system to detect leaks."