Congress Passes Pipeline Safety Bill
DeFazio worked to include stronger and better enforced safety standards in the bill
December 7, 2006
Press Release | Contact: Danielle Langone (202) 225-6416
WASHINGTON, DC—U.S. Congressman Peter DeFazio cosponsored a bill to strengthen safety measures for pipelines such as the proposed natural gas pipeline in Coos Bay. The Pipeline Inspection, Protection, Enforcement and Safety (PIPES) Act (H.R. 5782) passed the House last night by a voice vote.
"With the recent pipeline leaks in Alaska and the possibility of a new liquefied natural gas pipeline in Southwestern Oregon, this legislation is particularly timely," DeFazio said. "I supported this bill because it adds important new pipeline safety measures and strengthens enforcement of existing measures, helping to ensure the safety of all Americans."
The PIPES Act reauthorizes the pipeline safety programs of the Transportation Department for a total of $353 million over four years. The legislation:
- increases the number of federal pipeline safety inspectors by 50 percent by 2010;
- strengthens the authority of the overseeing agency, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA), to make conditions safer and restore pipeline operations during manmade or natural disasters;
- Implements safety measures to improve pipeline operators' worker training and protect against worker fatigue;
- Requires additional pipeline operators to implement pipeline integrity management plans and requires senior executives to certify the reports on these programs; and
- Increases transparency by requiring monthly public summaries of safety enforcement actions taken on gas and hazardous liquid pipelines.