DOT announces pipeline safety initiative

April 6, 2011

Allentown, PA – The Department of Transportation on April 4 launched a national safety initiative to repair and replace aging pipelines to prevent potentially catastrophic incidents. The announcement was made in Allentown, PA, where a natural gas pipeline failure on Feb. 9 leveled homes and businesses and resulted in five fatalities.

According to a press release, as part of the initiative, DOT will provide technical assistance to help identify high-risk pipelines. The action plan also would:

  • Address immediate concerns in pipeline safety
  • Propose new regulations aimed at strengthening reporting and inspection requirements
  • Make information about pipelines and the safety record of pipeline operators easily accessible to the public

A Pipeline Safety Forum is scheduled to take place April 18 in Washington. The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration also intends to create a new webpage to provide information on local pipeline networks.