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Senate Co-Sponsorship Memoranda

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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: March 21, 2019 10:41 AM
From: Senator Thomas H. Killion
To: All Senate members
Subject: Pipeline Emergency Response Plan Disclosure
In the near future, I will be introducing legislation mandating that pipeline operators provide current Emergency Response Plans to the Public Utility Commission (PUC) which could then be responsibly and confidentially shared with county emergency services for the purpose of coordinating a response to a pipeline incident.

The bill would accomplish two objectives. First, it would require that Emergency Response Plans are not only reviewed for regulatory compliance to federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) guidelines by the PUC, but a complete, accurate and up to date copy is to be filed with the Commission. Second, it would establish provisions as part of Act 156 of 2006, known as the Public Utility Confidential Security Information Disclosure Protection Act, allowing the PUC to responsibly and confidentially share information necessary for emergency response coordinators to fulfill their obligations under Title 35 (Health and Safety) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes.

The relevant information for planning purposes includes the potential impact radius in a worst case scenario, where valve stations are located and pipeline sections that have been identified as “high consequence” through federally mandated risk analysis studies. Without this firsthand information from operators, the burden is on county emergency services to either commission their own studies or make assumptions, and when dealing in community safety there is no room for error.

This change is critical in ensuring that there is no bureaucratic barrier between county emergency services and the information they need ensure our first responders are following through on effective and well informed plans to keep our communities in Pennsylvania safe.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this important legislation.

Introduced as SB284