Compliance Verification Activity Report: CV2223-272 - Minell Pipeline Limited

Overview

Compliance verification activity type: Field Inspection

Activity #: CV2223-272
Start date: 2022-10-03
End date: 2022-10-07

Team:

Regulated company: Minell Pipeline Limited

Operating company: Manitoba Hydro

Province(s) / Territory(s):

Discipline(s):

Related events:

Rationale and scope:

To follow-up on the company's IR responses (from CV2122-331) regarding its safe excavation procedure, including the process for dealing with unknown or abandoned facilities upon discovery and clarify the locate request process post-incident. 

Compliance tool(s) used:

Facility details

Facilities:

Regulatory requirements

Regulatory requirements that apply to this activity:

Information Request

IR from CER (Information Request sent from CER to company)
Field IR - questions from the field

Legislative Requirement : Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) 2020-03-16

Sections of the Act

  • Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR) 2020-03-16
    • 47.2 A company shall develop, implement and maintain a damage prevention program that anticipates, prevents, manages and mitigates damage to its pipeline and meets the requirements set out in section 16 of the Canadian Energy Regulator Pipeline Damage Prevention Regulations — Obligations of Pipeline Companies.

Theme and Categories

Damage Prevention
  • Vehicle or Mobile Equipment Crossings
    • Authorization and Consent
    • Temporary Crossings
  • Ground Disturbance
    • Guidelines

Due Date : 2022-10-13

Review Response
Unacceptable

Follow-up Action
Issue Non-Compliance

IR from CER (Information Request sent from CER to company)
Pre-Inspection Request for Documents

Legislative Requirement : Canadian Energy Regulator Act (CERA)

Sections of the Act

  • Canadian Energy Regulator Act (CERA)
    • Administration and Enforcement
      • Powers on entry<br />103 (2) The inspection officer may, for that purpose,

Theme and Categories

Damage Prevention
  • Damage Prevention Program
    • Processes and Standards
    • Manage and Mitigate
  • Locates and Information
    • Locate Requests
  • Ground Disturbance
    • Authorization and Consent

Due Date : 2022-09-28

Review Response
Acceptable

Follow-up Action
None

Observations (no outstanding follow-up required)

Observation 1 - General Observations - Minell Pipeline Remediation Work (Lowering)

Date & time of visit: 2022-10-12 08:30

Discipline: Damage Prevention

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

CER Inspection Officers (CER IOs) accompanied Manitoba Hydro (Minell) representatives to conduct a field inspection of the remediation work (lowering) on the Minell Natural Gas Pipeline (Minell pipeline) performed by the company's contractor. The following was observed by CER IOs at the worksite:

In the course of the inspection, CER IOs also walked southbound along the RoW to the location of a culvert that had been installed a few years ago by the company to address drainage and depth of cover issues. CER IOs were informed that the area directly on top of the culvert is not cultivated. There was also no evidence of equipment tracks or rutting observed directly over the culvert. CER IOs also accompanied company representatives while performing a depth of cover (DoC) survey (for demonstration purposes only) using an electronic locator along the RoW between the worksite and the culvert. The measurement taken as a sample confirmed adequate DoC. The company representatives indicated that they connect at the station on Hwy 703 in order to get a signal for locating. 

Compliance tool used: No compliance tool used

Observation 2 - NNC #1 - Edge of Right-of-Way Marker Posts

Date & time of visit: 2022-10-12 08:30

Discipline: Damage Prevention

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

CER IOs observed pipeline identification signage present on both sides of the roadway (85 N) where the pipeline crosses. The metallic signs were yellow and displayed the name of Manitoba Hydro in black print. One pipeline right-of-way (RoW) marker post was also present on the South side of the roadway a few metres away going East. These were made of yellow plastic with a label displaying the name of Centra Gas and a phone number that was different than the metallic Manitoba Hydro pipeline identification signs.

CER IOs were informed that signage maintenance was conducted during annual leak surveys where the company would look for damaged or missing signage, but added that RoW marker posts are not in focus for the annual leak surveys. While the RoW marker posts are not a legislated requirement, CER IOs explained that if pipeline companies have installed RoW marker posts, that they are required to ensure they are maintained accordingly. CER IOs further noted that in this case, RoW marker posts and pipeline identification signs with different emergency contact information can also cause confusion and delays in the case of an emergency. 

As an alternative, CER IOs also explained that should it be determined by the company that RoW marker posts no longer serve their intended purpose, that the company has the flexibility to vary its applicable procedures accordingly. 

CER IOs therefore determined that the company did not demonstrate that it adequately monitored its pipeline RoW to ensure that RoW marker posts were maintained in accordance with the company's procedures. A notice of non-compliance pursuant to OPR Section 39 was issued.
 

Compliance tool used: Notice of Non-compliance (NNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

The company is required to:

Due date: 2023-01-31

Date closed: 2023-05-04
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: Yes

Observation 3 - NNC #2 - Mechanical Equipment Crossing OPR s. 6.5(1)(e)

Date & time of visit: 2022-10-12 10:00

Discipline: Damage Prevention

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

CER IOs observed the trackhoe cross the pipeline a number of times to excavate a trench on both sides. When IOs asked about any weight or load-bearing assessment conducted by the company to determine if the mechanical equipment used at the worksite was safe to cross, the company indicated that a vehicle/loading assessment was done in 2012 on the Minell Pipeline which determined that highway vehicles and farm equipment were safe to cross where the pipeline has 600 mm of cover of more. The company added that the areas of insufficient cover (less than 600 mm as per the 2012 assessment) for the Minell remediation site were therefore staked to prevent equipment crossing by the contractor. However, IOs determined that using the 2012 assessment was not sufficient to demonstrate that the company has evaluated and managed the risks posed by the crossing of the mechanical equipment used a the remediation site over the Minell Pipeline. Inadequate evaluation of risks is in non-compliance with section 6.5(1)(e) of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPRs) - a notice of non-compliance was therefore issued.

 

Compliance tool used: Notice of Non-compliance (NNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

The company is required to:

Due date: 2023-01-31

Date closed: 2023-05-04
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: Yes

Observation 4 - NNC #3 - Inadequate Procedures for Managing Discovery of/Damage to Unknown Facility

Date & time of visit: 2022-10-14 09:00

Discipline: Damage Prevention

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

Upon review of Manitoba Hydro's safe excavation procedures, CER IOs noted that there were no procedure or process that documents what to do when abandoned, unidentified or foreign infrastructure is found during a ground disturbance activity. Manitoba Hydro confirmed that they do not have a written procedure or process for when foreign abandoned or unidentified infrastructure are exposed during a ground disturbance activity.

Section 27 of the OPR requires the company to develop, regularly review and update operation and maintenance manuals that provide information and procedures to promote safety, environmental protection and efficiency in the operation of the pipeline.
 
In addition, OPR Section 6.5 (1)(t) requires the company to establish and implement a process for developing contingency plans for abnormal events that may occur during construction, operation, maintenance, abandonment or emergency situations.

Compliance tool used: Notice of Non-compliance (NNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

The company is required to develop a corrective and preventive action (CAPA) plan that describes how it plans to address the deficiencies noted in this observation upon discovering foreign buried infrastructure during a ground disturbance activity. This CAPA plan must include a schedule for the implementation of these corrective and preventive actions.

Due date: 2023-01-31

Date closed: 2023-05-04
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: Yes

Observation 5 - NNC#4 - Contractor Oversight - Field Supervision of Labourers in the Trench

Date & time of visit: 2022-10-12 07:00

Discipline: Damage Prevention

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

The information provided by the company in response to the Field IR issued on 12 October 2022 confirmed that direct contractor oversight must be provided by the safety watch and that they are required to address unsafe acts or work practices.

CER IOs observed that the labourers often stood in the trench for extended periods with their backs to the operator while the machine was in motion in the trench. The CER IOs discussed these actions with the Manitoba Hydro safety watch and requested they address the unsafe actions. The CER IOs also discussed the issue with the foreman/operator and the labourers. 

CER IOs determined that Manitoba Hydro failed to identify unsafe acts of the labourers in the the trench who did not maintain line of sight contact with the equipment operator and failed to supervise them to ensure that they performed their duties in a manner that was safe, pursuant to 6.5(1)(k) of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations.


Paragraph 6.5(1)(k) of the OPR requires Manitoba Hydro to implement a process for verifying that employees and other persons working with or on behalf of Manitoba Hydro are trained and competent and for supervising them to ensure that they perform their duties in a manner that is safe. This provision requires two distinct process requirements. One being a process for verifying that employees and other persons working with or on behalf of the company are trained and competent and the other being a process for supervising them while working.
 

Compliance tool used: Notice of Non-compliance (NNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

The company is required to develop a corrective and preventive action (CAPA) plan that describes how it plans to address the deficiencies noted in this observation to ensure that unsafe work practices by employees and other persons working with or on behalf of the company on the field are corrected immediately. This CAPA plan must include a schedule for the implementation of these corrective and preventive actions.

Due date: 2023-01-31

Date closed: 2023-05-04
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: Yes

Observation 6 - NNC#5 - Tailgate Meeting and Emergency Response Plan (ERP)

Date & time of visit: 2022-10-12 08:00

Discipline: Damage Prevention

Categories:

Facility:

Observations:

CER IOs attended the tailgate meeting at the site the morning of 12 October 2022 and noted that the meeting and review of site hazards was very brief and failed to identify several hazards. The work location was rural and CER IOs identified that the nearest medical centre was approximately 45 minutes away in Moosomin, (SK). CER IOs also noted that cellular coverage in the area was spotty.

Because of the rural location of the Minell Pipeline, maintenance activities are almost always a significant distance from medical facilities, which is a hazard worthy of note. Site-specific hazards shall be considered and site-specific emergency response plans made for maintenance activities and reviewed with employees and other persons working with or on behalf of the company.

CER IOs determined that Manitoba Hydro failed to supervise persons working with or on behalf of the company to ensure that they performed their duties in a manner that was safe, pursuant to 6.5(1)(k) of the Onshore Pipeline Regulations (OPR). CER IOs also determined that Manitoba Hydro failed to establish a process that ensures that employees and other people working with or on behalf of the company so that each person is aware of the activities of others and has the information that will enable them to perform their duties in a manner that is safe as per OPR s.6.5(1)(q). And that Manitoba Hydro failed to develop, implement and maintain an emergency management program that anticipates, prevents, manages and mitigates conditions during an emergency that could adversely affect property, the environment or the safety of workers or the public as per OPR s.32(1), and Manitoba Hydro failed to  take all reasonable steps to inform all persons who may be associated with an emergency response activity on the pipeline of the practices and procedures to be followed and make available to them the relevant information that is consistent with that which is specified in the emergency procedures manual as per OPR s.34.

6.5(1) A company shall, as part of its management system and the programs referred to in section 55,
32 (1) A company shall develop, implement and maintain an emergency management program that anticipates, prevents, manages and mitigates conditions during an emergency that could adversely affect property, the environment or the safety of workers or the public.

34 A company shall take all reasonable steps to inform all persons who may be associated with an emergency response activity on the pipeline of the practices and procedures to be followed and make available to them the relevant information that is consistent with that which is specified in the emergency procedures manual.

Compliance tool used: Notice of Non-compliance (NNC)

Regulatory requirement:

Relevant section(s):

Company action required:

The company is required to develop a corrective and preventive action (CAPA) plan that describes how it plans to address the deficiencies noted in this observation to ensure that an adequate site-specific emergency response plan is made for maintenance activities and available to employees and persons working with or on behalf of the company while on the field. This CAPA plan must include a schedule for the implementation of these corrective and preventive actions.
 

Due date: 2023-01-31

Date closed: 2023-05-02
Note: the date closed is the date that the inspector completed their review of the company corrective actions for adequacy and determined that no further actions are required.

Reason closed: Requirement met

Compliance achieved: Yes

Observations (company follow-up required)

Identified non-compliances to company plans or procedures are non-compliances either to:

- the condition of an authorization document that requires the implementation of that plan or procedure; or

- the relevant section of the regulations that requires implementation of that plan or procedure including those sections that require implementation of plans or procedures as a part of a Program