PIPELINES NEAR SCHOOLS: WORKING TOGETHER TO ENSURE SAFETY
School officials work hard every day to keep students safe. Emergency plans are in place to address: fires, tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, bomb threats, terrorist attacks, and more. Schools that are located near underground pipelines transporting natural gas or petroleum products should address pipelines in their emergency plans as well.
There are several ways to determine if a pipeline is near a school:
- Look for pipeline marker signs (see p. 3 of the 2015 Pipeline Awareness Newsletter for additional information about pipeline markers)
- Access the National Pipeline Mapping System at: www.npms.phmsa.dot.gov. This web site shows the general location of all hazardous liquid and natural gas transmission pipelines in the U.S. (please note that this application does not include distribution or gathering pipelines)
- Call your local utility company and ask them if they are aware of other pipelines located near your school
- Call your local fire department and ask them if they are aware of pipeline companies operating buried pipelines in the area
- Access www.pipelinesnearby.org from your computer or mobile phone (please note this application does not include the location of all pipelines)
- Call 811 and request information about pipelines in the area
If there are underground pipelines within one-quarter mile of a school, officials should contact the pipeline operator for additional information about the potential hazards associated with those pipelines. Pipeline operators will work closely with school personnel, emergency responders, and public officials to make sure everyone knows what to do in the event of a pipeline emergency.
Please refer to the center section of the 2015 Pipeline Awareness Newsletter for more detailed information about the signs of a leak, hazards of a release and recommended actions to take in the event of an emergency.
Additional resources are also available from the School Pipeline Safety Partnership website at www.schoolpipelinesafety.org.
It is also important to notify your state’s one call center prior to digging or excavating on school property. This can easily be accomplished by dialing 811. Advance notice requirements vary by state. To view your state’s requirements, visit www.Call811.com. Dialing 811 prior to any digging ensures that the appropriate underground utilities will be marked, and unnecessary safety risks will be avoided.