NPGA Asserts Primacy of NFPA 58 in DOT Proposed Rule

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) published a proposed rulemaking recently that would require motor carriers who engage in cargo tank loading and unloading to perform a risk assessment of the operation and develop and implement safe operating procedures based upon the risk assessment. Additionally, the Agency proposed that each employee involved in loading and unloading operations be trained and certified on an annual basis on the required job tasks associated with loading and unloading.

Although the proposed rulemaking acknowledged that compliance with NFPA 58 was acceptable to demonstrate compliance with limited aspects of the proposal, there were other elements of the proposal such as development of a risk assessment and hose maintenance requirements where this was not clear. NPGA noted that NFPA 58 already provides the level of facility hose management and maintenance sought by PHMSA through this proposal. We further asserted the overall value and primacy of NFPA 58 to demonstrate full compliance with the proposed rulemaking.

NPGA stated our opposition to PHMSA proposing to establish more stringent training requirements for employees who engage in loading and unloading operations by requiring such employees to receive annual training and qualification/certification. NPGA contended that the current function-specific training requirements in the Hazardous Material Regulations (49 CFR 172.704) already sufficiently cover loading and unloading requirements. Further, for the past 20 years NPGA has utilized the industry-developed Certified Employee Training Program (CETP), which addresses loading and unloading operations, to train its employees.

Propane GAS Act Building Support: Legislation to extend the three alternative fuel tax credits for propane autogas, autogas vehicles, and autogas refueling stations continues to attract support in Congress. Building the cosponsor lists for HR 2014 and S.1120 was the top task for Propane Days, and so far 13 cosponsors have joined in the House. Three Senators have also signed on. NPGA lobbyists are following-up on all member contacts made during Propane Days, but the current debate over the federal debt and deficit are dominating many policymakers' schedules now. Should you have additional questions, please feel to contact Bob Elliott.



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