House passes bill to authorize pipeline safety funding

Washington – The House on Dec. 12 passed a bill that would authorize federal pipeline safety programs through fiscal year 2015.

The bill (H.R. 2845) (.pdf file), which would fund the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, includes provisions that would significantly increase the maximum penalty for pipeline safety violations. According to the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, the bill addresses the following:

  • Pipeline safety recommendations from the National Transportation Safety Board following recent incidents, such as a gas pipeline explosion in San Bruno, CA, that killed eight people and injured 58
  • Current laws governing pipeline transportation
  • Cost-benefit principles to improving pipeline safety

The bill is based partially on a similar Senate bill (S. 275) (.pdf file) that was approved in October. At press time, H.R. 2845 was awaiting Senate approval.

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