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Pipeline Safety Stakeholder Communications

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Georgia Enforcement Program

Operator compliance with state and federal pipeline safety regulations is monitored through a comprehensive inspection and enforcement program. The program is comprised of field inspections of operations, maintenance, and construction activities; programmatic inspections of operator procedures, processes, and records; incident investigations and corrective actions; and through direct dialogue with operator management. The agency or agencies below work in partnership with the federal Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) to assure pipeline operators are meeting requirements for safe, reliable, and environmentally sound operation of their facilities. The tables below provide a summary of probable violations discovered and compliance actions taken by the agency(ies) as a result of these activities. These data are reported annually as part of the state's annual pipeline safety program certification or agreement to PHMSA. Information on enforcement actions taken by PHMSA is available at the Pipeline Safety Enforcement Program homepage.

These tables provide a summary of probable violations identified and corrected during each year. Probable violations are alleged non-compliances with pipeline safety regulations. Although state enforcement procedures vary, operators are provided an opportunity to respond to these alleged non-compliances and defend their actions as part of resolving each case. Separate tables are provided for hazardous liquid and gas pipeline oversight. (A)

Gas: Probable Violations: 2001-2015 (1)
Year Number Found During Year Number Submitted to DOT for Action Number Corrected During Year
GEORGIA PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION
2001 29 N/A 42
2002 31 N/A 23
2003 53 N/A 34
2004 16 N/A 45
2005 70 N/A 26
2006 38 N/A 51
2007 312 N/A 34
2008 343 N/A 34
2009 117 N/A 61
2010 2,190 N/A 1,468
2011 131 N/A 142
2012 136 N/A 308
2013 152 N/A 182
2014 84 N/A 325
2015 126 N/A 127

Number Found During Year: The number of new probable violations identified during the calendar year through inspections, investigations, and other means.

Number Submitted for DOT Action: The number of probable violations that are referred to PHMSA for Federal enforcement. Compliance actions may be referred to PHMSA in situations where the state pipeline safety program is not certified to take enforcement action on certain intrastate pipelines. For example, some states do not have enforcement authority of municipal pipeline systems. Furthermore, some state pipeline safety programs are authorized by PHMSA to inspect interstate pipelines on PHMSA's behalf as Interstate Agents. In these situations, any probable violations identified by Interstate Agents must be referred to PHMSA for enforcement.

Number Corrected During Year: The number of probable violations that were satisfactorily corrected during the calendar year. These could be violations identified in the current year as well as violations that were carried over from previous years. Violations are satisfactorily resolved when the operator provides evidence and satisfies the agency that the non-compliances have been properly addressed and corrected.

A compliance action is an action or series of sequential actions taken to enforce pipeline regulations. One compliance action can cover multiple probable violations. A compliance action may take the form of a letter warning of future penalties for continued violation, an administratively imposed monetary sanction or order directing compliance with the regulations, an order directing corrective action under hazardous conditions, a show-cause order, a criminal sanction, a court injunction, or a similar formal action. This table provides the number of compliance actions taken by the state agency in each year. It also provides the number and amount of civil penalties that were assessed each year to pipeline operators and the number and amount of civil penalties that were collected each year from operators. Because there are occasions where a civil penalty is assessed in one year but not collected until a following year, the amount assessed and collected in a given year may not always be the same. (A)

Gas: Compliance Actions: 2001-2015 (1)
Year Compliance Actions Taken Number of Penalties Assessed Dollars Assessed Number of Penalties Collected Dollars of Penalties Collected
GEORGIA PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION
2001 29 0 0 0 0
2002 8 1 10,000 0 0
2003 10 2 51,500 2 51,500
2004 20 3 230,500 3 221,500
2005 8 4 109,000 4 57,000
2006 25 7 62,000 7 62,000
2007 155 16 87,000 9 33,000
2008 1,365 1,264 820,000 1,264 233,000
2009 2,236 2,236 2,320,600 196 388,600
2010 1,650 2,451 7,329,000 2,451 454,750
2011 2,177 2,115 6,705,250 2,115 456,125
2012 123 11 1,782,000 1 100,000
2013 140 123 2,110,000 0 0
2014 80 12 6,115,000 2 2,000
2015 79 14 112,500 2 250,500

Notes

  1. Some states do not have programs for both gas and hazardous liquid pipelines. Thus enforcement data is not shown when the state has no corresponding program. Alaska and Hawaii have neither a gas nor hazardous liquid pipeline safety programs. When a state has no program, oversight is provided by PHMSA.

Sources

  1. Federal State Tracking and Reporting web application (FedSTAR) as of March 31, 2016 for states with active PHMSA certification and/or agreement. NOTE: New Hampshire's (NH) data for the years 2005 through 2015 as of October 30, 2017.

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