The Commission's Pipeline Safety program is authorized by the Cox Act and Texas Natural Resources Code to regulate the safety of intrastate gas, hazardous liquid and CO2 pipelines in Texas. The Commission is certified by the U.S. Department of Transportation for the enforcement of federal pipeline safety regulations for intrastate pipeline facilities pursuant to the federal Pipeline Safety Act.
The Commission became involved in pipeline safety when it issued its first order pertaining to gas pipeline safety, Docket No. 122, on July 27, 1937. The Commission order required that natural gas be odorized for domestic use. The order was a prompted by an explosion of unodorized gas that filled a school in New London, Texas on March 18, 1937, that killed 293.
Pipeline Safety works to enforce compliance with federal and state laws and regulations by pipeline operators. Our goal is to encourage an efficient and economical pipeline industry and oversee pipeline activities to ensure compliance with state and federal safety regulations and promote public safety and awareness.
Pipeline Safety currently has 46 employees, 28 of which are full time inspectors, located in seven offices throughout the state. On average our inspectors conduct 2,500 inspections per year using a risk based evaluation model. In addition our staff works to investigate accidents and complaints involving pipeline facilities.