One-call pipeline safety legislation moved much closer tobecoming law this week as the Senate voted to add it to omnibustransportation legislation and representatives Richard Hugh Baker(R-LA) and Frank Pallone (D-NJ) introduced a nearly identicalone-call bill in the House of Representatives. The Senate alreadyhas passed one-call as a stand alone bill (S. 1115) but includingit in the larger transportation package increases its chances ofbecoming law.

The one-call legislation focuses on improving state notificationsystems, the so called “call-before-you-dig” programs. The majorityof pipeline accidents are caused by third party damage. Althoughmany states already have one-call programs, the legislation wouldauthorize federal grants for states that meet minimum standards sothey could establish call centers or improve existing ones.”One-call systems are a key element in enhancing safety and theenvironment, preventing accidents and saving lives,” said JohnRiordan, vice chairman of KN Energy and chairman of the InterstatePipeline Association of America. “This important bill would neverhave been included in the ISETA legislation without the help ofMajority Leader Trent Lott (R-MS), Minority Leader Thomas Daschle(D-SD) and senators John McCain (R-AZ) and Ernest Hollings (D-SC).”

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