PHMSA Proposes Updates to Gas Distribution Regulations

Date: October 19, 2023


The U.S. Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) recently announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to improve safety, protect customers, and mitigate risk through the improvement of emergency response plans, integrity management plans, and operation manuals.

The link to the full article can be found below:

In summary, PHMSA is requiring gas companies to:

  • Improve construction procedures designed to minimize the risk of incidents caused by system over-pressurization,
  • Update Distribution Integrity Management Programs to cover and prepare for over-pressurization incidents,
  • Design NEW Regulator Stations with secondary pressure relief valves and remote gas monitoring, to better prepare gas distribution systems to avoid over pressurizations, and limit damage during incidents, and
  • Strengthen Emergency Response Plans (ERP) for gas pipeline emergencies, including requirements for operators to contact local emergency responders and keep customers and the affected public informed of what to do in the event of an emergency.

SCE Services Overview

SCE has been assisting Gas Utility clients across the nation for over the past twenty-five years with natural gas engineering design, GIS data collection, as-builts, permitting and more! Our extensive Enhanced GIS Data Collection program provides an all-inclusive solution to the requirements set forth in the PHMSA “Mega Rule”.

The program includes the following:

  • Materials Tracking and Traceability
  • GPS Field Data Collection
  • As-Built Drawing Generation
  • Digital Service Cards
  • GIS Data Integration

Benefits and value this program offers includes the following:

  • Label & Verify all Materials Meet Pipeline Design Pressure
  • Track Materials from Delivery to Installation
  • Document all Feature Locations with Sub-Centimeter Accurate Equipment
  • Quickly & Accurately Identify Components of Your System
  • Guarantee that Components will be Identifiable for the Life of the Asset
  • Label and Stencil Welds for Validation with Inspection Reporting
  • Real-Time Validation of Operator Qualifications for Field Personnel

Our Inspectors and GIS Field Technicians oversee inspection and collect GIS data for thousands of miles of transmission, high pressure, distribution, and low pressure gas mains.  We have substantial experience with both steel and plastic gas main design, inspection, and GIS data collection. 

Additionally, SCE provides our Clients with innovative design and engineering solutions to each project’s unique requirements. We provide all aspects of utility-related services including initial investigations, planning, surveying, preliminary and final distribution and transmission design, environmental permitting & remediation, construction permitting (utility opening, railroad crossings, etc.), traffic control plans, related regulatory applications and approvals, construction cost estimates and bid phase services.

Please reach out to SCE to learn more about this new requirement and how we can assist!

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