February 9, 2018
Effective next Monday, Feb. 12, Railroad Commission pipeline damage prevention rules require excavators who strike a pipeline while digging to notify the pipeline operator by calling the 811- notification center as soon as possible, but no later than one hour after an incident.
Excavators must also call 911 if any natural gas or other product is released when an underground pipeline is struck.
These rule updates extend the deadline for pipeline operators and excavators to file a damage report with the Railroad Commission from the current 10 days to 30 days.
RRC rules already require anyone planning to dig deeper than 16 inches to call 811 before they dig to prevent damage to underground pipelines.
The required 811 call prompts pipeline operators to mark their underground natural gas or hazardous liquid pipelines to avoid being struck during the digging process.
Failure to obey the “Call Before You Dig” rules can result in penalties and fines.
More information on these new rule requirements can be found under “Chapter 18. Underground Pipeline Damage Prevention” at the RRC website.
— Railroad Commission of Texas