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Pawlowski Presenting at One-Call Forum

03/14/2013
Pawlowski Presenting at One-Call Forum
Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski is representing the National League of Cities today at a panel discussion on pipeline safety in West Palm Beach, Florida.

A public meeting is being held to gain a perspective from local government on the impact of exemptions in state one-call laws on safety.

The NLC was requested to participate by the US DOT Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration. The panel also includes representatives from the National Association of Counties, the American Public Works Association, The American Farm Bureau Association and the American Association of Railroads.

Excavation damage is a leading cause of pipeline accidents and Congress has directed to PHMSA to study the impact of exemptions on public safety.

In May 1994 an excavation crew bent a natural gas line leading to the Gross Towers housing complex in the 1300 block of W. Allen Street while removing a buried heating oil tank. The company left the pipe uncovered and unsupported until damaging it again in early June. That night, a gap in the gas line caused gas to flow into the complex, triggering two explosions and a fire. One person was killed and 60 others were injured.

Pawlowski chairs a US Conference of Mayors Pipeline Safety Task Force and is working with San Bruno, California Mayor Jim Ruane to define and develop a national mayors’ council.

San Bruno and Allentown have been devastated by recent deadly natural gas explosions and fires. A September 2010 pipeline explosion and fire in San Bruno killed eight people, destroyed 38 homes, and badly damaged 70 more. A February 2011 natural gas explosion in Allentown killed five people and destroyed eight homes. 
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