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We have implemented Integrity Management Programs for our natural gas transmission and hazardous liquids pipelines, to ensure the safety of pipelines located in High Consequence Areas (HCAs) that satisfy the Code of Federal Regulations 49 CFR Part 192 Subpart O (Gas transmission pipeline integrity management) and 49 CFR 195.452 (Pipeline integrity management in high consequence areas). We also have implemented an Integrity Management Program for our storage facilities to ensure the integrity and safety of all assets to satisfy 49 CFR § 192.12 (Underground natural gas storage facilities).

This page contains several useful resources, such as facts about natural gas and liquids, safety measures to take in case of a natural gas or liquids emergency, call-before-you-dig information, and right of way information.

Pipeline Emergency Information

National Pipeline Mapping System

The National Pipeline Mapping System (NPMS) Public Viewer enables the user to view NPMS pipeline, liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant and breakout tank data one county at a time, including attributes and pipeline operator contact information. Users can also view gas transmission and hazardous liquid pipeline accidents and incidents going back to 2002 for the entire US.

NPMS pipeline data consists of gas transmission pipelines and hazardous liquid pipelines jurisdictional to PHMSA. It does not contain gas gathering or distribution pipelines, such as lines which deliver gas to customer homes. Therefore, not all pipelines in an area will be visible in the Public Viewer.

All NPMS data is for reference purposes only. It should never be used as a substitute for contacting a one-call center prior to excavation activities. Please call 811 before any digging occurs.

Pipeline Emergency Videos

Recognizing Pipeline Emergencies

For your safety, markers are used to show the approximate location of pipelines and identify the companies that operate them. You should be aware of any pipeline markers in and around your neighborhood. Write down the name and phone numbers of the pipeline company listed on the markers, and call them in case of emergency or if you detect a problem around the pipeline.

Natural Gas Pipeline Emergencies

Because natural gas is non-toxic and lighter than air, it typically dissipates into the atmosphere. However, natural gas will burn if mixed with the right amount of oxygen and then ignited by a spark.

If you sense any of the following emergencies on or near pipeline rights of way or above-ground facilities, leave the area immediately and report it as soon as possible:

Recognize a natural gas pipeline leak:

  • Gas escaping from a pipeline. This may be detected in any of several ways:
    • By Sound: Leaks may be accompanied by a loud, high-pitched whistle or roar. If you hear such a sound in the vicinity of a pipeline, leave immediately and call the pipeline operator.
    • By Sight: Natural gas is transported in a very dry condition and will remove the moisture from the soil in the vicinity of a leak. A patch of discolored soil, dead vegetation, bubbling water or frozen ground when the weather is warm along the pipeline should be reported immediately.
    • By Smell: Natural gas is odorless; however, local distribution companies that provide gas to communities add an odorant to the gas. If you smell a distinctive “rotten egg” odor along the pipeline, please report it.
  • Fire located near or directly involving a pipeline right of way or other pipeline facility.
  • Explosion occurring near or directly involving any pipeline facilities.
  • Natural disasters (earthquake, washout, lightning, etc.) directly involving pipeline facilities.
  • Any digging or construction on a pipeline right of way in the absence of pipeline company personnel. Whenever you observe earth disturbance activities in proximity to pipeline facilities, please inquire to ensure the ONE-CALL process has been used for the dig area.
  • Any other damage that might signify a hazardous condition.

Respond to a natural gas pipeline emergency:

If you think you hear, see or smell a leak from a natural gas pipeline:

  1. Leave the area immediately, heading upwind.
  2. Do not touch, breathe or make contact with leaking liquids or gases.
  3. Do not light a match, start an engine, use a telephone, operate light switches or do anything that might create a spark.
  4. From a safe location, call 911 or your local emergency response number and the pipeline company. Call collect, if needed, and give your name, telephone number, a description of the problem and its location.
  5. Do not drive into a leak or vapor cloud area.
  6. Do not attempt to stop the leak by operating pipeline equipment.
  7. Warn others, if necessary.
  8. Remember, even a scrape or dent to a pipeline needs to be reported to the pipeline company. If not promptly reported or repaired, it could result in a future leak or serious accident.

If the problem involves a Dominion Energy pipeline, please call the appropriate telephone number:

Never hesitate to call if you think there is a leak. Dominion Energy's Gas Control Center will dispatch company personnel to investigate reported leaks at any time of day or night.

Liquids Pipeline Emergencies

Examples of liquid petroleum gas and highly volatile and hazardous liquids emergencies include the following:

  • Propane, ethane, natural gasoline, butane or isobutane detected inside or near a building
  • Propane, ethane, natural gasoline, butane or isobutane fire located near or directly involving a pipeline facility
  • Propane gas explosion occurring near or directly involving a pipeline facility
  • Highly Volatile Liquids (HVL/Propane/Ethane) leaks resulting in a vapor cloud (low to the ground) when released to the atmosphere
  • Liquid petroleum gas leaks resulting in product spill on land or in waterways
  • Natural disaster

Recognize a liquids pipeline leak:

  • By sight: A pool of liquid on the ground near a pipeline, a dense white cloud of fog over a pipeline or discolored vegetation surrounding the pipeline may be signs of a leak. As propane, ethane, butane and isobutane vaporize from a liquid state, each produces a heavier-than-air vapor. Therefore, when leaking, the vapor tends to spread along the ground. The cold vapors condense water vapor from the air and create a visible fog, which gives an indication of the area covered by the leaking gas; however, ignitable mixtures extend beyond the area of visible fog. As natural gasoline leaks, heavier-than-air vapors are produced and spread along the ground. The gasoline vapors are not cold enough to cause a visible fog, but heavy vapor production is sometimes visible; it might look like heat waves. If you observe earth disturbance activities in proximity to pipeline facilities, please inquire to ensure the ONE-CALL  process has been used for the dig area.
  • By sound: An unusual noise, like a hissing or roaring sound, coming from the pipeline might be a sign of a leak.
  • By smell: An unusual smell may accompany a pipeline leak.

Responding to a liquids pipeline emergency

What to do if a leak occurs:

  • Leave the area immediately, heading upwind.
  • Do not touch, breathe or make contact with leaking liquids or gases.
  • Do not light a match, start an engine, use a telephone, operate light switches or do anything that might create a spark.
  • From a safe location, call 911 or your local emergency response number and the pipeline company whose line is involved. Call collect, if needed, and give your name, telephone number, a description of the problem and its location.
  • Do not drive into a leak or vapor cloud area.
  • Do not attempt to stop the leak by operating pipeline equipment.
  • Warn others if necessary.

If the emergency involves a Dominion Energy Transmission pipeline, call the Dominion Energy Transmission 24-hour emergency telephone number: 888-264-8240.

Never hesitate to call if you think there is a leak. Dominion Energy's Gas Control Center will dispatch company personnel to investigate reported leaks at any time of day or night.

Program Resources

Be Safe Call First

Accidentally digging into utility lines is extremely dangerous, can result in serious injury or death and could be very costly. If you disturb a pipeline, corrosion or other damage could eventually occur, endangering others and disrupting essential utility services that people rely on every day.

If you're planning any work that will disturb the earth, the law requires you to call a one-call notification system for free utility location services before you dig. Please call the service in the state where your work is to take place at least 3 working days prior to the start of the project.

Follow these simple steps to ensure safety during your project:

  • Call First. Underground power lines, communication cables, gas lines, water lines or other utilities may lie at various depths below the surface of your property or areas of planned excavation. It is important to alert the appropriate state notification center and allow time for the area utility companies to mark the location of their underground facilities.
  • Respect Marks. It also is important to respect the marks indicating the presence of underground utilities. Excavation should be carefully performed only after confirming that all utilities have marked the location of their facilities. Remember that locating underground utility lines is not an exact science and location marks have varying bands of required accuracy, depending on a particular state's requirements. These can range from 18 to 24 inches from the actual facility.
  • Call the One-Call System. In addition to the national one-call number (811), all states provide a one-call communication system that provides a phone number for excavation contractors and the general public to call when they intend to excavate, blast or do any tunneling work.

When calling, be prepared to give:

  • Your name & telephone number
  • The company you represent (if applicable)
  • The location of the work
  • The type of project
  • The date and time the project is scheduled to begin
  • Whether or not you'll be using explosives

Property Markings and Ticket Search

If your property is marked and you didn't call 811, there's a reason for the markings. Use the following links below to visit your state specific 811 resource.

Call Before You Dig: Locations

In addition to the national one-call number available by dialing 811, you can request utility marking by contacting the one-call system for the state in which the work will take place:

National 811
Dial 811
www.call811.com

Call 811 from anywhere in the country a few days prior to digging, and your call will be routed to your local one-call center. Tell the operator where you're planning to dig and what type of work you will be doing, and your affected local utilities companies will be notified about your intent to dig. In a few days, they'll send a locator to mark the approximate location of your underground lines, pipes and cables, so you'll know what's below and be able to dig safely.

Georgia
800-282-7411
Positive Response: 888-670-2902
Georgia Call Before You Dig 811

The Georgia Utility Facility Protection Act (GUFPA) was established to protect the underground utility infrastructure of Georgia. GUFPA mandates that, before starting any mechanized digging or excavation work, you must contact Georgia 811 at least 48 hours but no more than 10 working days in advance to have utility lines marked. This law covers activities such as excavation, tunneling, grading, boring, demolition or any similar work. Georgia 811 accepts calls Monday thru Friday, excluding holidays, for normal locate requests. Damage and Emergency locate requests may be called in 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Maryland
800-257-7777
Miss Utility

Maryland and D.C. statutes require prior notification to all owner-members of underground facilities in your work area of your intent to perform an excavation or demolition. Most underground facility owners are required to become owner-members and receive notifications of your planned excavation or demolition when you contact the Notification Center. Owner-members are also required by Law to respond and/or mark your notice of a planned excavation or demolition.

New York
800-962-7962
Dig Safely New York

The most common cause of underground facility damage happens when a third party unknowingly digs, blasts or drills near an underground facility. If you plan to dig or do any type of excavation or construction work, New York state law requires you to contact Dig Safely New York two full working days prior to starting your work, not counting the day of your call, weekends or holidays.

Ohio
800-362-2764
Ohio Utilities Protection Service

By law, everyone MUST contact the Ohio Utilities Protection Service at least 48 hours but no more than 10 working days (excluding weekends and legal holidays) before beginning ANY digging project.

A vital resource for Ohio residents and businesses alike, the Ohio Utilities Protection Service acts as a communication link between utility companies and individuals planning any digging activity.

Pennsylvania
800-242-1776
Pennsylvania One-Call System

Contact the Pennsylvania One-Call System at least three working days before digging for free utility marking service. PA One Call will alert member utilities of your plans to dig, then ask them to identify any underground pipes or cables at your location. They'll also tell you about any other companies that you must notify before you begin digging.

South Carolina
888-721-7877
South Carolina 811

South Carolina state law requires that excavators give three full working days notice (not including the day of the call) excluding weekends and holidays, for the locators to get out to mark the area. After a notice has been processed, you will be notified when you are legally free to proceed with the digging work and which utilities in the area will be notified on your behalf.

Virginia
800-552-7001
Miss Utility of Virginia

In Virginia, the law requires that anyone performing excavation first call Miss Utility, a free service available 24 hours, seven days a week.

Utilities with facilities in the area of proposed excavation will respond within 48 hours, beginning at 7 a.m., the next business day. Excavation can commence anytime after the caller has verified all utilities have marked or responded to the notification center, and that their facilities are clear of the intended areas of excavation.

Excavate tickets obtained from Miss Utility should be no larger than an area that can be excavated within 15 working days from 7 a.m. on the next working day following notice to the notification center, or no greater than one mile. Excavate tickets can only be updated one time, meaning the life of a ticket (if updated) can be up to 30 days. Check your ticket status at 800-552-3120.

Excavators are encouraged to call Miss Utility at 800-552-7001 for information on how to begin submitting tickets via Web-ticket methods.

Excavator manuals, brochures, stickers, scheduled on-site training regarding the law and other educational materials are available through the State Corporation Commission's Division of Utility and Railroad Safety. Additional legal and notification information also is available from Miss Utility of Virginia.

West Virginia
800-245-4848
Miss Utility of West Virginia, Inc.

Calling 811 at least two business days prior to an excavation will allow utility owners or their hired locating contractors to mark your proposed excavation site for free so you can dig safely.

Tell us about your project including location, address, who the work is done for, type of work, how long it will take, as well as any special instructions needed to make sure the right area gets marked. We will provide you with a reference number that serves as proof of your call. In addition MUWV will keep a complete record of your call to verify your compliance with the law.

Basic facts about liquids

Liquefied Propane

Liquefied propane is a versatile energy form present in most unrefined natural gas and in crude petroleum. When extracted, it can have many industrial uses and be used for heating and lighting. It can be found naturally as both liquid and gas. One of the most common methods of transporting liquefied propane is in its liquid state via underground pipelines under high pressures. Should a pipeline become damaged and liquefied propane escape, you should be aware that:

  • In both liquid and gaseous states, it is colorless and odorless unless an odorant has been added.
  • Liquefied propane will burn when mixed with certain concentrations of oxygen or certain oxygen-containing substances and ignited.
  • Physical contact with liquefied propane can result in freezing burns or frostbite. Inhaling the vapor can cause symptoms of oxygen deficiency, such as rapid respiration, lack of coordination, poor judgment, nausea and unconsciousness.

Natural Gasoline

Natural gasoline can be used for gasoline blending or as a petrochemical feedstock. Should a pipeline become damaged and natural gasoline escape, you should be aware that:

  • At room temperature, natural gasoline is a clear colorless liquid, with a distinct hydrocarbon odor.
  • Vapors will ignite under the right circumstances.
  • Natural gasoline is a dangerous fire and explosion hazard when mixed with air.
  • Vapors may migrate for considerable distances before reaching an ignition source at which time the fire would flash back to the source of the release.
  • Natural gasoline flame produces a heavy, black, thick smoke; it can produce carbon monoxide when oxidized with a deficiency of oxygen.
  • Inhaling natural gasoline vapor can cause symptoms of oxygen deficiency, such as rapid respiration, uncoordination, poor judgment, nausea and unconsciousness.

Butane and Isobutane

Normal butane and isobutane can serve various industrial uses. These two energy forms are present in most unrefined natural gas and in crude petroleum products. Normal butane is used for gasoline blending or as a feedstock to make plastic products. Isobutane is used as a propellant primarily in aerosol products, foam packaging, paints and synthetic rubber or as a petrochemical feedstock, serving as a key octane component of motor gasoline or in high octane-enhancing gasoline additives. Should butane or isobutane escape to the atmosphere, you should be aware that:

  • At room temperature, both normal butane and isobutane are colorless gasses. They can be liquefied by lowering the temperature, increasing the pressure or both.
  • Normal butane has a slightly disagreeable odor. Isobutane can have a sulfurous odor like "natural gas," but sweetened isobutane has a slightly pleasant odor.
  • Both normal butane and isobutane are dangerous fire and explosion hazards when mixed with air. Vapors may migrate for considerable distances before reaching an ignition source at which time the fire would flash back to the source of the release.
  • Both normal butane and isobutane burn with a luminous, smoky flame; and can produce carbon monoxide when oxidized with a deficiency of oxygen.
  • Inhaling normal butane or isobutane vapor can cause symptoms of oxygen deficiency, such as rapid respiration, uncoordination, poor judgment, nausea and unconsciousness.

Basic Facts About Natural Gas

Natural gas is a versatile form of non-polluting fuel. The most common method for transporting it is under high pressure in underground pipelines. Should our pipelines become damaged and natural gas escapes, you should be aware that:

  • It is colorless and generally odorless, unless it contains a naturally occurring odor or has an odorant added.
  • It is lighter than air and will rise and dissipate rapidly.
  • Natural gas is neither toxic nor poisonous, but it can cause suffocation in a confined space because of its ability to displace oxygen in the blood.
  • Natural gas will burn when mixed with air and ignited. Escaping gas can be ignited from open flames, sparks from electrical switches and motors, mechanical equipment, moving rocks, etc.

Components of Natural Gas (percentages are approximate and will vary)

  • Methane 96.0 percent
  • Nitrogen < 0.3 percent
  • Ethane < 1.5 percent
  • Other hydrocarbons, each less than 0.1 percent to 1.4 percent
  • Propane < 0.3 percent

Liquids Pipelines

Americans consume more than 700 million gallons of petroleum products each day in the form of gasoline, diesel fuel, heating oil, natural gas and propane.

Much of the petroleum products you use are transported through underground pipeline systems. Each day, millions of gallons of oil and petroleum products are quietly delivered with minimal impact on the environment.

The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) says that pipelines are the safest means of oil and petroleum transportation.

To help make them even safer, DOT has issued regulations related to integrity management for operators of hazardous liquid pipelines. Some Dominion Energy pipelines carry these various commodities, such as natural gasoline, isobutane, normal butane and propane.

This website provides information on Dominion Energy Transmission’s compliance with DOT regulations and the safe operation of these pipelines.

Natural Gas Pipelines

Millions of Americans rely on clean, efficient natural gas to fuel homes and workplaces, never considering the vast network of pipelines that criss-cross the country transporting this abundant source of clean energy from the wellhead to the burner tip.

The companies that build and operate interstate natural gas pipelines have created the safest mode of transportation today — safer than highway, rail, airborne and waterborne transport. And the interstate natural gas pipeline industry is spending millions of dollars each year on research and new technologies to make their systems increasingly safer.

In December 2002, President George W. Bush signed into law the Pipeline Safety Bill H.R. 3609, the Pipeline Safety Improvement Act of 2002. One of the provisions of the act required the Secretary of Transportation to issue regulations defining integrity management programs prescribing the standards for conducting a risk analysis and adoption, and implementation of an integrity management program for natural gas pipelines.

In December 2003, the Office of Pipeline Safety issued a final rule requiring natural gas pipeline operators to develop integrity management programs for gas transmission pipelines located where a leak or rupture could do the most harm, that is, where it could impact high-consequence areas.

Dominion Energy fully complies with these requirements.

Integrity Management Program Strategy

Dominion Energy's management team cultivates a culture of integrity management in order to align itself with the spirit of the regulation.

Dominion Energy has created an Integrity Management Program (IMP) that it believes meets or exceeds the intent of the integrity management regulations. The IMP will be refined continually as it moves from its framework to a comprehensive program. Conformance to the processes required by Dominion Energy’s IMP is thoroughly documented and communicated throughout the organization.

Dominion Energy’s pipeline IMP for liquids pipelines as well as natural gas pipelines addresses all of the components required by the DOT including, but not limited, to the following components:

  • High-Consequence Areas
  • Threat Identification and Risk Assessment
  • Baseline/Continuous Assessment Plans
  • Remediation/Prevention
  • Record-Keeping Provisions
  • Performance and Quality Assurance
  • Management of Change
  • Communications

For more information on Integrity Management Programs, see the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Integrity Management Fact Sheet.

For more information specific to liquids pipelines, see the U.S. DOT’s Integrity Management Fact Sheet for Liquids.

Key Terms:

High-Consequence Areas (HCAs)
The integrity management regulation was designed to address areas of a pipeline that are located in high-consequence areas (HCAs).

Threat Identification and Risk Assessment
Dominion Energy has adopted a threat-based methodology for managing liquids pipeline risk.

Baseline/Continuous Assessment Plans
Segments with the highest potential for risk are given priority.

Remediation/Prevention
Remediation is the action taken by Dominion Energy to mitigate the danger of a potential integrity concern. Remediation includes pressure reduction and/or timely repair and preventive measures that halt a potential integrity problem so it does not proceed to failure.

All Dominion Energy liquids pipelines are equipped with low-pressure alarms and are monitored 24 hours a day by operators for abnormal operating conditions. In addition, leak detection is installed on Dominion Energy Transmission’s natural gasoline pipeline. Highly accurate flow meters are installed on the inlet and outlet of the pipeline, and leak-detection software is used to monitor the inlet/outlet flows on the pipeline for discrepancies in the flows.

Record-Keeping Provisions
The company maintains a complete history of all major integrity components within integrated databases.

Performance and Quality Assurance
The company’s Integrity Management Program is evaluated to ensure that the program effectively assesses integrity and protects high-consequence areas. A Quality Assurance Plan provides documented proof that the operator meets all requirements of its Integrity Management Plan.

Management of Change Management of change procedures identify changes to pipeline systems and consider the impact of those changes on the integrity of the pipeline.

Communications
Dominion Energy has developed and implemented a communications plan to inform company personnel, jurisdictional authorities and the public about its integrity management efforts and the results of its integrity management activities.

Rights of Way Corridor

Rights of way corridors extending along the pipeline play an important role in ensuring the integrity and safety of Dominion Energy's pipeline network. The Right of Way (ROW) Agreement is a legal document through which a landowner grants the pipeline company permission to use a portion of his or her land to install, operate and maintain pipelines.

The ROW Agreement remains in effect even if the property is sold, and is binding to the new owners. The ROW Agreement gives the pipeline company the necessary permission to regularly maintain the rights of way along its pipeline systems to ensure pipeline safety.

To ensure pipeline integrity:

  • Do not erect buildings or structures, or plant trees or other obstructions on the pipeline rights of way.
  • Do not excavate, change the grade or impound water within the rights of way without the company’s permission.
  • Do not move heavy equipment or logs across the rights of way, and avoid blasting within 1,000 feet of the pipeline without the company’s approval.

Although building on the rights of way is prohibited, under certain conditions roads, railroads, streets, cables and other utility lines may cross the pipeline. In these instances, Dominion Energy will work with the owner, developer or contractor to accommodate such construction. The owner and/or developer will be required to pay any costs necessary to ensure the pipeline meets all regulations. View the construction guidelines.

Dominion Energy asks that landowners familiarize themselves with the content of the ROW Agreement and abide by its content.

Safe Operation of Pipelines

To ensure the safe operation of its system, Dominion Energy employs highly trained, highly experienced employees to operate the system in accordance with federal, state and local government regulations. Our employees maintain a commitment and dedication to ensure we operate our facilities according to the highest safety standards.

Safe operation of the system is our primary consideration. We closely regulate the pressure at which our system operates to ensure that it is within limits established by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Doing so helps maintain the integrity of the pipeline and ensures the reliable, safe operation of the system.

The pipeline system is monitored 24 hours a day, seven days a week by sophisticated computer and telecommunications equipment. If problems are detected, appropriate action can be taken immediately.

Pipeline operators make use of extensive safety systems and programs. These can include:

  • Computer-assisted control centers capable of detecting and interpreting pressure or flow changes in a pipeline.
  • Regular air patrols in low-flying aircraft by experienced pilots and observers.
  • Periodic ground patrols for detailed inspection of the pipeline environment.
  • Highly trained maintenance personnel located at strategic points along the pipeline.
  • Continuous monitoring of the products flowing through the pipeline.
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