Operator Qualification (OQ) Rule - Western Regional Gas Conference

Report
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Introduction OQ
Addressing abnormal operating conditions during
evaluations and at job site
Tracking OQ during major projects
 Maintaining records of who actually performed the
covered task(s)
 Span of Control limitations and documentation
Addressing the “gaps” between:
 Qualification and Operator-specific procedures
 Performing OQ work and meeting D&A requirements
Recent regulatory OQ findings and expectations
Q&A
The OQ Rule is intended to provide an additional level of
safety and requires pipeline Operators to develop a
qualification program to evaluate an individual’s ability to
perform covered tasks and to recognize and react to
abnormal operating conditions that may occur while
performing covered tasks.
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OQ is not intended to be a one-time event, but a process
that continues for the working lifetime of an individual.
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After initial evaluation and qualification have been
completed, re-evaluation and requalification is required.
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The Operator must recognize this and designate for each
covered task an appropriate time interval for
requalification.
Why do we need qualified individuals…
A KC-135 aircraft was being pressurized at ground level. The outflow valves which are used to regulate the
pressure of the aircraft were capped off during a 5 year overhaul and never opened back up.
Abnormal operating condition
means a condition identified by
the operator that may indicate a
malfunction of a component or
deviation from normal operations
that may:
(a) Indicate a condition
exceeding design limits; or
(b) Result in a hazard(s) to
persons, property, or the
environment.
Qualified individuals must be able to recognize and react
appropriately to AOC’s.
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Recognize: means that the employees are able to identify
a situation or event on the pipeline that is out of the
ordinary and could become a hazard to the public or
environment, if not promptly corrected.
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React appropriately: means the employee knows what to
do to ensure that the hazard is promptly addressed. This
could include notifying the employee’s supervisor or site
inspector or taking the correct action to mitigate the
hazard, whichever is appropriate for the AOC.
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Task-specific versus generic
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PHMSA OQ FAQ - Operators are expected to develop a thorough listing
of AOCs, both task-specific and generic. The task-specific AOCs may be
included within the evaluation criteria for the specific task, but the generic
AOCs should be maintained in a separate list and reviewed periodically.
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PHMSA Integrated Inspection Guidance - In addition to task-specific
AOCs (i.e., those that may be caused by performance of the task), generic
AOCs (i.e., those that may reasonably be encountered during
performance of the task) have been identified and used in qualification in
cases where special requirements and conditions for the task being
performed must be considered.
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During evaluation
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At the job site
Identify applicable covered tasks for the activities
that will be performed
 Communicate requirements to all affected
personnel
 Assure personnel are qualified to perform the
applicable covered tasks, before they perform
the task
 Addressing Span of Control (SOC)
 Obtain/maintain qualification records
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No one can perform a covered task unless they are
specifically qualified to perform that task or are directed,
observed and supervised by a qualified individual (if span of
control is allowed) as outlined in the OQ plan
Sample Covered Task List
A SOC ratio of 1:3 would mean that one qualified employee
could direct and observe up to three unqualified employees.
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Assure that a qualified person is always present during
activities where a covered task is being performed
Assure that all individuals, qualified and non-qualified,
understand the requirements
Consider any conditions that may impact the SOC ratio,
such as:
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Language Barriers
Noise Level
Weather
Regulatory agencies’ expectations
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“Sniper” Observations
 Track personnel who actually performed
 Need to identify individual for each covered task
 Inspectors’ role?
 How often do you verify qualifications and identities?
 Who worked under SOC?
 Record Discussions
 AOC’s (Site-Specific)
 SOC limits & adjustments
 Procedures/policies
task(s)
 Task criteria versus Operator
 Use of “off-the-shelf” covered tasks
procedures
 How is it addressed?
 Need to demonstrate that the person in the “ditch” is aware of
procedures
 Best Practices
 Tailgate meetings
 JSA’s
 Training
 Regulatory
agencies’ expectations
49 CFR Part 199 outlines the requirements for
Operators including contractors and subcontractors.
 Operators
of pipeline facilities that are subject to
part 192, 193, or 195, are required to test covered
employees for the presence of prohibited drugs
and alcohol.
Operators are responsible for meeting 49 CFR
parts 40 and 199 to include but not limited to:
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All actions of your officials, reps, and agents (including
service agents) in carrying out the requirements of the
DOT agency regulations.
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Maintain and follow a written Anti-Drug & Alcohol Misuse
Prevention Plan that conforms to the requirements
 Assure that all covered employees are aware of the
provisions and coverage of the plan
 Provide
clear policies and provisions for
education and training, drug and alcohol testing
 Provide
when needed, referral for evaluation,
education, and treatment to employees
 Contractor
compliance
The OQ Rule is intended to provide an additional
level of safety and requires pipeline Operators to
develop a qualification program to evaluate an
individual’s ability to perform covered tasks and to
recognize and react to abnormal operating
conditions that may occur while performing covered
tasks.
Drugs and alcohol effect a person’s ability to make
coherent decisions, motor functions and vision.
Thus drugs and alcohol effect an individual’s ability
to perform covered tasks and to recognize and
react to abnormal operating conditions that may
occur while performing covered tasks.
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D&A and OQ
 Cannot perform covered work until compliance
with D&A are met
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How is it monitored?
 Need to demonstrate that the person(s)
(Internal and Contractors) meet D&A, prior to
performing covered work
D&A Program Challenges
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Program Monitoring
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TPA
Contractor Compliance
State laws
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Medical marijuana
Recreational use
Medical Marijuana States
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Currently there are 19 States that have approved the
use of Medical Marijuana
State vs. Federal
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Medical use and or State legalized use of controlled
substances
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CFR 49 parts 40 and 199 = Federal requirement
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No State can authorize violations of federal law
Addressing D&A-OQ “Gap”
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Need to periodically review program
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Need to develop method for contractor compliance
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When was the last review?
Are you using a TPA?
Review Contractor D&A Plans for compliance
Monitor statistical data
How do you assure contractors that do not meet
compliance are not performing covered functions?
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Need to communicate non compliance of contractors to field
personnel
Who is Responsible
Like OQ, the Operator is held responsible for noncompliance
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Internal Plan
Contractor Plan
Third Party Administrator
The Pipeline Enforcement Program has a number of different
mechanisms to assure operator compliance and safe operation.
Including:
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Letters of Concern
Warning Letters
Notice of Amendment
Notice of Probable Violations
Corrective Action Orders
Notice of Proposed Safety Order
The Pipeline Safety, Regulatory Certainty, and Job Creation Act of
2011 increased the civil penalty authority of PHMSA to a maximum
of $200,000 per violation per day, up to a maximum of $2,000,000 for
a related series of violations.
2002 – June 2013
• Corrective Action Orders
102
• Notice of Probably Violation
738
• Notices of Amendment
877
• Warning Letters
727
• Notices of Proposed Safety Orders
13
• Civil Penalties
541
Proposed Penalties
$54,301,200
Assessed Penalties
$37,735,437
(Including 33 cases in 2013))
Criminal penalties may be taken:
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If any person willfully and knowingly violates a pipeline safety
requirement is subject to a fine of not more than $25,000 for each
offense, imprisonment for not more than five years, or both.
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If any person willfully violates a regulation for off-shore gathering lines
is subject to a fine of not more than $25,000 for each offense,
imprisonment for not more than five years, or both.
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If any person willfully and knowingly injures or destroy any interstate
pipeline facility, is subject to a fine of not more than $25,000 for each
offense, imprisonment for not more than 15 years, or both.
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If any person willfully and knowingly defaces, damages, removes, or
destroys any pipeline sign, right-of-way marker, or marine buoy, that
individual is subject to a fine of not more than $5000 for each offense,
imprisonment not to exceed one year, or both.
OQ Protocol Summary Statistics
Significant Protocol Areas
Potential Issues
/Overall Inspections
% PI
4.02 Abnormal Operating Conditions (AOCs)
2116 / 5998
35.3
3.01 Documentation for Individual on CTs
2018 / 5998
33.6
8.02 Notification of Program Changes
1130 / 3563
31.7
2.02 Evaluation Methods for KSA’s
1895 / 5998
31.6
7.01 Qualification Trail
1880 / 5998
31.3
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2009 – Operator failed to identify a covered task (hot tap)
nor had anyone properly qualified: $100,000 fine assessed
2009 – Operator failed to identify a covered task (threaded
fitting assembly: $133,100 fine assessed (being contested)
2010 – Operator did not enforce SOC properly: $100,000
fine assessed (being contested)
2010 – Operator allowed unqualified personnel to perform
covered tasks; $271,300 fine assessed (being contested)
2010 – Operator failed to identify a covered task (mud
plugs) nor had anyone properly qualified: $788,000 fine
assessed
2010 – Operator failed to identify covered tasks nor had
properly qualify personnel: $98,600 fine assessed
Operator did not have “on-site” supervisory personnel
who were provided the 60-minute training regarding
identification of probable drug use.
 The interim area manager is trained but is only “on-site”
approximately once every 3 months.
Operators anti-drug plan procedures were found
inadequate by PHMSA.
 Did not include accident definitions
 Post accident drug testing procedures did not explicitly
define which employees are covered by Company’s
anti-drug plan.
A civil penalty of $40,000 for Operators violation of 49
C.F.R.§ 199.225(a)(1), for failing to test each covered
employee for alcohol whose performance of a covered
function either contributed to the May 4, 2009 accident or
could not be completely discounted as a contributing factor
to that accident.
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Required annual testing percentages not met
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DAMIS Reporting
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No data to report (contractor compliance
Operator failed to identify contractors whom performed covered work
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Flooding the pool
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Plan does not meet the minimum requirements
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Laboratory not approved
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DER not understanding regulations/requirements
Drug/Alcohol Plans outdated
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Missing data or inaccurate
Post-accident testing not meeting
regulations/requirements
Rehabilitation process/procedures not followed
Testing statistics not maintained or submitted
Records not maintained or available
On the horizon:
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New construction and inspection tasks may be included
Activities based on incorporated references
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Expansion of pipeline facilities
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Routine monthly break-out tank inspections
All gathering lines
Well heads
Underground storage facilities
Verification of contractor knowledge of Operator
procedures
Documentation of qualified individual that actually
performed the task (who wrapped that pipe, etc.)

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