Underground Construction - July 2019 - 18

Texas Implements New Pipeline Safety Regulations
not historical, natural gas hazards within
a utility's system and use this information
to demand corrective responses sooner,
versus later.
When introduced, these three bills
were viewed by many as complementary,
each helping to standup the other, to
form a strong public awareness and safety
framework built on new opportunities
provided by web-based data and real-time
information. It's not clear - at least from
the public record - why HB 868 didn't draw
Committee support.
The public was given the chance to weigh
in on the bills at the April 8 meeting. The
Committee chair asked people to comment
on Anchia's three bills as a package, so to
speak, not singularly. Support, across many
sectors, far outweighed opposition. But it is
worth noting that while utility companies
Atmos Energy and CenterPoint Energy
had registered in support of HBs 864 and
866, they are not listed as supporting
HB 868, something legislators may have
noted. Neither Atmos nor CenterPoint

would discuss what they liked or didn't
like about any of the bills, nor would the
Texas Pipeline Association, which includes
distribution companies.
Anchia's district had been the site of
a catastrophic gas explosion in February
2018, a tragic accident that killed a highschool student in her home. Anchia said
the explosion galvanized his attention
on existing, and apparently relatively
common, natural gas pipeline dangers
within the district, and even across Dallas.
He told colleagues that gas leaks were so
numerous and well-known throughout one
neighborhood that residents would use
lighters to flare the escaping gas. It was just
common knowledge about exactly where
the leaks were.
A sense of constant and almost ubiquitous danger from natural gas was a
common message from people who testified
in April in support of the three House bills.
Jennifer Gates, a member of Dallas City
Council, speaking on behalf of the Council,
supported all three bills. She told the House

Committee that nine people have died in
natural gas accidents in Dallas since 2006.
She said that since 2010, Atmos Energy
lost 98.6 million cubic feet of gas. "I always
hear from constituents about these safety
issues," she told the Committee.
Similarly, Dallas County Judge Clay
Jenkins supported all three bills -
personally and on behalf of the County. He
noted that Dallas depends on pipes from
the 1940s and '50s. He said the County has
been working with Atmos Energy and the
Mayor of Dallas to develop an expedited
pipe replacement schedule - something
that Atmos has agreed to and has started.
Jenkins was particularly supportive of
the "real-time" reporting and posting
requirements within HB 868. "We need
a quicker system," Jenkins said, "one that
is interactive and transparent."
In Texas, pipeline safety proponents
didn't get everything they wanted from
their legislature this session, but these
new bills start important new moves
for safety across the Lone Star State. *

US Pat. 10,131,766

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18

JULY 2019 | UConOnline.com


http://www.interplastic.com http://www.UConOnline.com

Underground Construction - July 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Underground Construction - July 2019

Contents
Underground Construction - July 2019 - FC
Underground Construction - July 2019 - IFC
Underground Construction - July 2019 - Contents
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 4
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 5
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 6
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 7
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 8
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 9
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 10
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 11
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 12
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 13
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 14
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Underground Construction - July 2019 - 16
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Underground Construction - July 2019 - 18
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 19
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 20
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 21
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 22
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 23
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 24
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 25
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Underground Construction - July 2019 - 27
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Underground Construction - July 2019 - 40
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 41
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 42
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 43
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 44
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Underground Construction - July 2019 - 46
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 47
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Underground Construction - July 2019 - 49
Underground Construction - July 2019 - 50
Underground Construction - July 2019 - IBC
Underground Construction - July 2019 - BC
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