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Chapter 15     Entire Code
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Chapter 15  |  Article 15 - 5C
WVC 15 - CHAPTER 15. PUBLIC SAFETY.
WVC 15-5C- ARTICLE 5C. REPORTING OF EMERGENCY INCIDENTS BY WELL AND PIPELINE OPERATORS.

WVC 15-5C-1

§15-5C-1.  Definitions.

When used in this article:

(1) “Director” means the Director of the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management.

(2) “Incident” means:

(A) An injury to an individual at a well, well pad or pipeline facility that results in death or serious bodily injury or that has a reasonable potential to cause death;

(B) An unintended confinement of an individual in an enclosed space at a well, well pad or pipeline facility from which a person will not be released for a period exceeding fifteen minutes;

(C) The unintended ignition or explosion of oil, natural gas or other substance at a well, well pad or pipeline facility;

(D) An unintended fire in or about a well, well pad or pipeline facility not extinguished within  fifteen minutes of discovery of the unintended fire; and

(E) Any unintended release of poisonous or combustible substances that have a reasonable potential to cause death.

(3) “Pipeline facility” means, without limitation, new and existing pipe, pipe rights-of-way and any equipment, facility, or building used in the transportation of oil or natural gas or the treatment of oil or natural gas during the course of transportation: Provided, That the term “pipeline facility” shall not include pipelines of four inches or less, measuring the inside diameter, that service a farm, commercial structure or residence.

(4) “Pipeline operator” means any person or persons, firm, partnership, independent contractor, company or corporation that constructs, maintains or operates a pipeline facility.

(5) “Well” means any shaft or hole sunk, drilled, bored or dug into the earth or into underground strata for the extraction or injection or placement of any liquid, oil or natural gas, or any shaft or hole sunk or used in conjunction with such extraction or injection or placement.  The term “well” does not include any shaft or hole sunk, drilled, bored or dug into the earth for the sole purpose of core drilling or pumping or extracting therefrom potable, fresh or usable water for household, domestic, industrial, agricultural or public use.

(6) “Well pad” means any area constructed and maintained for use to create a well.

(7) “Well operator” means any person or persons, firm, partnership, independent contractor, company or corporation that drills or engages in hydraulic fracturing for any liquid, oil or natural gas, or that completes or operates wells to produce any liquid, oil or natural gas.

WVC 15-5C-2

§15-5C-2.  Reporting requirements.

(a) In addition to any other requirements imposed by law, all pipeline operators and well operators shall report incidents to the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management at the Mine and Industrial Accident Call Center at 1-866-987-2338, or other such number as may be identified by the Director within fifteen minutes of ascertaining the occurrence of an incident at a well, well pad or pipeline facility.  Pipeline operators and well operators may satisfy this requirement by contacting the local emergency telephone system and orally reporting the information required by this section.

(b) Contents of report:

(1) The initial report shall include the following minimum information:

(A) The name, title, and business affiliation of the individual making the report;

(B) The identification and location of the well, well pad or pipeline facility; and

(C)  Notification that an incident has occurred.

(2) If the caller has ready access to the following information, he or she shall also provide:

(A) Then-available information concerning the nature and extent of the incident, including any information that concerns the existence or nonexistence of potential threats to the public health;

(B) In the event of an unplanned fire that cannot be contained within fifteen minutes, explosion or release, preliminary information regarding the type of substance involved and, if a release, the estimated amount released, if known; and

(C) The name, title, business affiliation, and contact information of the individual designated to serve as a contact person on behalf of the pipeline operator or well operator.

(c) Any local emergency telephone system receiving an initial notification shall immediately forward all information received to the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management at the Mine and Industrial Accident Call Center at 1-866-987-2338, or other such number as may be identified by the Director.

(d)  All calls received by the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management at the Mine and Industrial Accident Call Center shall be recorded for documentation purposes.  Recording of calls shall be automatic, and the recorded call information, including time of call and complete voice transcripts, shall be made available to the public upon receipt of a request to the Director in accordance with the West Virginia Freedom of Information Act, article one, chapter twenty-nine-b of this code.

(e) The Director shall impose a civil administrative penalty of not less than $2,500 but not to exceed $50,000 on the pipeline operator or well operator if it is determined that the pipeline operator or well operator failed to give timely notice as required by this section: Provided, That the Director shall waive imposition of the civil administrative penalty if the failure to give  the required notice:

(1) Occurred as a result of circumstances wholly outside the control of the pipeline operator or well operator;

(2) Occurred because the pipeline operator or well operator was attempting to stabilize the incident;

(3) Occurred because the pipeline operator or well operator was rendering emergency assistance; or

(4) Resulted from the incident occurring in a location with no or inadequate wireless communications coverage and notice was provided within fifteen minutes of reestablishing communication.

(f) Any pipeline operator or well operator aggrieved by the imposition of a civil administrative penalty may request within thirty days of receipt of a written communication imposing a civil administrative penalty that the Director reconsider the imposition or amount of the civil administrative penalty. If reconsideration is denied, the pipeline operator or well operator shall have a right of appeal to the Circuit Court of Kanawha County, West Virginia.

Note: WV Code updated with legislation passed through the 2016 Regular Session
The West Virginia Code Online is an unofficial copy of the annotated WV Code, provided as a convenience. It has NOT been edited for publication, and is not in any way official or authoritative.


Recent legislation affecting the Code

Citation Year/Session Short Title
§15 - 1 K- 1 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 2 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 3 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 4 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 5 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 6 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 7 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 8 - (New Code)
§15 - 1 K- 9 - (New Code)
SENATE BILL - 280
PASSED - Regular Session

SB280 SUB1 enr  (Uploaded - 04/07/2017)
Moving administration of Civil Air Patrol to Adjutant General
§15 - 2 - 5 - (Amended Code)
SENATE BILL - 523
PASSED - Regular Session

SB523 SUB1 enr  (Uploaded - 04/14/2017)
Converting to biweekly pay cycle for state employees
§15 - 2 - 10 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 2 - 24 - (Amended Code)
SENATE BILL - 684
PASSED - Regular Session

sb684 enr  (Uploaded - 04/04/2017)
Relating generally to WV State Police
§15 - 2 - 3 - (Amended Code)
SENATE BILL - 690
PASSED - Regular Session

sb690 enr  (Uploaded - 04/10/2017)
Authorizing WV State Police impose and collect fees for agencies and entities using their facilities
§15 - 3 B- 2 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 3 B- 3 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 3 B- 4 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 3 B- 5 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 3 B- 6 - (Amended Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2167
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2167 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/20/2017)
Creating a Silver Alert program for senior citizens
§15 - 9 A- 2 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 12 - 2 - (Amended Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2318
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2318 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/25/2017)
Relating generally to human trafficking
§15 - 2 - 45 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 2 A- 6 B - (Amended Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2586
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2586 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 04/04/2017)
Relating to required minimum distribution of retirement benefits of plans administered by the Consolidated Public Retirement Board
§15 - 2 D- 3 - (Amended Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2676
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2676 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 04/06/2017)
Transferring the Security office under the Division of Culture and History to the Division of Protective Services
§15 - 14 - 1 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 2 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 3 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 4 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 5 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 6 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 7 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 8 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 9 - (New Code)
§15 - 14 - 10 - (New Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2759
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2759 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 04/14/2017)
Creating Statewide Interoperable Radio Network
§15 - 1 J- 2 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 1 J- 4 - (Amended Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2796
PASSED - Regular Session

hb2796 ENR  (Uploaded - 04/04/2017)
Relating to the West Virginia National Guard entering into contracts and subcontracts for specialized technical services
§15 - 2 - 17 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 2 E- 3 - (Amended Code)
§15 - 2 E- 5 - (Amended Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2939
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2939 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 04/06/2017)
Relating to the sale of items in the State Police Academy post exchange to the public
§15 - 2 - 24 D - (New Code)
HOUSE BILL - 2980
PASSED - Regular Session

HB2980 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 04/21/2017)
Relating to civil lawsuit filing fees for multiple defendant civil action
§15 - 5 A- 5 - (Amended Code)
HOUSE BILL - 3048
PASSED - Regular Session

HB3048 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 04/08/2017)
Relating to collection of Tier II fees for chemical inventories
§15 - 2 - 24 C - (New Code)
SENATE BILL - 104
PASSED - Regular Session

SB104 SUB1 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/10/2016)
Classifying Marshall University Forensic Science Center as a criminal justice agency
§15 - 1 F- 8 - (Amended Code)
SENATE BILL - 484
PASSED - Regular Session

SB484 SUB2 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/11/2016)
Relating to reemployment rights of military personnel
§15 - 2 - 3 - (Amended Code)
SENATE BILL - 500
PASSED - Regular Session

SB500 SUB1 ENR  (Uploaded - 03/08/2016)
Authorizing Superintendent of State Police hold training classes to use West Virginia Automated Police Network
§15 - 5 C- 1 - (New Code)
§15 - 5 C- 2 - (New Code)
HOUSE BILL - 4323
PASSED - Regular Session

HB4323 SUB ENR  (Uploaded - 03/23/2016)
Relating to the reporting of emergency incidents by well operators and pipeline operators
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