[Skip to Content]
DOT Logo
U.S. Department
of Transportation

Pipeline Safety Stakeholder Communications

Pipeline Safety Connects Us All

PIPA Recommended Practice BL03

BL03 "Utilize Information Regarding Development around Transmission Pipelines"

Practice Statement Transmission pipeline operators should provide information about their pipelines to local governments and property developers/owners who are planning development around their pipelines. Local government authorities regulating development should use this information to establish requirements regarding land use and development around transmission pipelines.

Audience(s): Local Government, Transmission Pipeline Operator

Practice Description

As required by federal pipeline safety regulations and, through incorporation to the regulations by reference, the American Petroleum Institute's Recommended Practice (API RP) 1162, transmission pipeline operators must provide information regarding their pipelines to local government organizations. Pipeline operators should include local government organizations having jurisdiction for regulating land use and property development. This will help ensure adequate understanding of the risks posed by transmission pipelines and encourage land use planners to incorporate pipeline coordination in their plan approval process.

Operators should also provide information related to transmission pipeline characteristics and associated hazards to local governments to enable them to make risk-informed decisions on proposed developments and/or development plans in relation to the pipeline risks.

By providing clear information and guidelines, transmission pipeline operators can standardize, to some degree, their own requirements and processes for coordinating development near their pipelines.

Educating property developers/owners regarding the rights of the transmission pipeline operator can lessen the likelihood that excavators will use construction techniques or procedures that threaten the integrity of the transmission pipeline. It can also reduce the likelihood of development designs that fail to take into account encroachment on pipeline rights-of-way a transmission pipeline operator's need for access to the pipeline for maintenance and repairs.

The information and guidelines should be made readily available through the operators' websites, and communicated via e-mail and other methods to organizations that represent the various stakeholder constituent groups (local government planning and zoning organizations, builders associations, engineering organizations, etc.).

Local government authorities regulating development should use this information to establish requirements for development around transmission pipelines and to make informed decisions relevant to pipeline risks on proposed developments and/or land use and development plans. Those requirements should also consider other Pipelines and Informed Planning Alliance (PIPA) recommended practices.