Ear to the Ground - Spring 2015 - (Page 13)

FEATURE B Y A N N N E W M A N , C E T   S R WA , S U P E R V I S O R , R I G H T- O F-WAY S E R V I C E S , E A S T E R N R E G I O N O P E R AT I O N S , E N B R I D G E P I P E L I N E S I N C . High Pressure Transmission Pipeline Safety T here is a small group in Ontario known as the "Joint Pipeline Group" representing the larger high pressure transmission pipelines operating across Ontario. The group was formed long before the ORCGA came into existence to promote pipeline safety and educate the public on the practices for safe excavation around these larger pipelines. Pipeline operators participating in this group include Enbridge Pipelines Inc., Imperial Oil Ltd, Plains Midstream Canada, Sun Canadian Pipeline Ltd., TransCanada Pipeline Ltd and Trans Northern Pipelines Inc. Pipelines that cross provincial or federal boundaries are regulated by the National Energy Board (NEB). The pipelines that operate strictly in Ontario are regulated by the Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA). These pipelines will not be found running along the side of the road or servicing homes. These are LARGE pipelines transporting petroleum products, crude oil and natural gas from the source such as oil fields in Alberta or refineries in Sarnia, to the customer, such as other refineries and distribution terminals in eastern Canada. The pipelines run in designated pipeline easements crossing private lands. The NEB-regulated pipelines also have a designated 30m safety zone on each side of the easement. The 30m safety zone was established as a safety buffer to ensure the pipeline company is notified prior to excavation in close proximity to the pipeline. Under the NEB regulations "No person shall construct a facility across, on, along or under a pipeline or excavate using power-operated equipment or explosives within thirty meters of a pipeline" without first obtaining leave (permission) from the pipeline company. In addition, "No person shall operate a vehicle or mobile equipment across a pipeline outside a travelled road allowance" without obtaining leave from the pipeline company. Permission is typically granted in the form of a "Crossing Agreement." The pipeline company must be notified prior to excavating within 30m of the pipeline right-of-way and a pipeline inspector must be present when excavating within 3m of the pipeline. The purpose of the inspector onsite is to ensure the excavator understands the precautions to follow when excavating near pipelines and to ensure the regulations are SPRING 15 complied with. If a pipeline inspector observes activity that will put the pipeline at risk the inspector has the authority to stop the work. All oil and gas pipelines are designed and constructed in compliance with CSA Standard Z662-11. Operating pressures range from approximately 200 psi to 1200 psi and regulations require a minimum depth of 0.6m in open fields and 1.3m when crossing under a travelled road or water way. The depth can change for various reasons and the pipeline may change direction in the middle of an open field. Always contact the pipeline company to confirm the location of the pipeline prior to any work within 30m of the pipeline. Contact information for the pipeline company can be found on pipeline signs located at road, water and rail crossings and other locations along the 13

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Ear to the Ground - Spring 2015

President's Message
2015 Dig Safe Symposium Awards
Damage Prevention and Innovation
High Pressure Transmission Pipeline Safety
Delivery of Locates in Ontario
ORCGA's Damage Prevention Technician, DPT Program
Ice Storm 2013: We Have the Power to Survive
Our Industry is Constantly Changing
Index of Advertisers

Ear to the Ground - Spring 2015