Achieving operator compliance with the pipeline safety regulations is critical to preventing accidents. A major aspect of compliance involves regular inspections of pipeline facilities and, in the event of a violation of the regulations, imposition of an appropriate administrative, civil, or criminal remedy. Federal and State pipeline inspectors perform inspections of the federal pipeline and additional state pipeline operators. These inspectors also conduct accident investigations and respond to public complaints concerning pipeline operations.
The Office of Pipeline Safety regional offices inspect interstate pipeline systems and intrastate facilities under direct Federal jurisdiction to determine operator compliance with pipeline safety regulations. These facilities include certain municipal and master meter gas systems that by State law are not subject to State regulation or intrastate pipelines in States where the state agency is not participating in the program.