President’s Message

I want to provide members a progress report on this work. I am chairing a Working Group to develop the Guideline – our basic goal is to prevent all accidents in the pipeline industry and encourage APIA members to promote good health and safety outcomes in their pipeline construction activities.

Our aim is simple – to develop a practical pipeline construction safety guideline that has the support of the industry including owners/clients and regulatory bodies. We intend to discuss with our technical regulators the content of the Code as it is developed.

We have concluded that the Guideline needs to be directed at two levels. First, general construction workers in the form of a one page poster. Second, we will prepare a substantive Guideline along the same concept as APIA’s Environmental Code of Practice.

Accordingly, the Guideline document will include:

  • An APIA Health and Safety Policy
  • Guidelines for formal safety assessment
  • An outline of safety management systems
  • Guidance for emergency plans

Our working group has concluded that many accidents in the industry can arise as a result of not managing changes to work scope and the operating environment. There is merit in considering safety observation systems and peer observation systems. Competency related issues in the workforce have also been identified as an important consideration. Other issues discussed include fitness for work, the role of safety alerts as an important knowledge and communication process for the industry, incident reporting and collation of lag/lead indicators.

At this stage the group has prepared a Draft Health and Safety Policy, which will be considered further by the Working Group, and an outline of the Guideline document itself. Furthermore, members should note that the first APIA Safety Alert has been issued on the APIA webpage.

Our industry has an excellent safety record which we must build on. We want to engage our technical regulators on these issues and develop an effective
“co-regulatory” approach to safety matters. Members and regulatory authorities will be consulted as the Guideline is developed and I urge you to give thought to the matters raised in the Draft Guideline when it is released.

I look forward to reporting on progress over the months ahead.

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