Pipeline operators are entering into a new era of high-performance pipeline operations. Following the introduction of complex and expansive new safety rules by PHMSA in October 2019, operators need software that simplifies the complexities.
The new rules represent “significant revisions to federal pipeline safety laws,” as stated by U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao. Additionally, PHMSA administrator Skip Elliott noted that “these forward-looking rules will help ensure pipeline operators invest in continuous improvements to pipeline safety and integrity management.”
How will your operation manage the change of aligning operations with the new requirements? We believe the answer is the EnerSys POEMS Control Room Management (CRM) Suite, a software platform that is built for interoperability.
Why is Interoperability Critical in the New Era?
Many pipeline operators are challenged by the blend of manual inputs and fragmented software. We recognize that some software pieces are useful to support individual tasks in the operations. However, we believe that for operators to embrace the forward-thinking nature of the new PHMSA rules, operators need to seek out software solutions that cover all areas of pipeline operations.
An interoperable suite of tools such as the POEMS CRM Suite gathers, stores, and presents data in a useful manner for all users, stakeholders, and owners in the operation.
Data that is gathered from one area of pipeline operations can be used by another area of the operation to direct critical decision-making.
For example, the interoperable suite of tools in the POEMS CRM Suite feed into each other to sort alarms, perform point-to-point verification, organize control room consoles by area, and support many other tasks.
The current set-up for many operators is downloading a file from one piece of software, then manually inputting data points into another piece of software to run analysis. This often leads to data incompatibility, errors during transfer, inability to authenticate for a compliance, and lost time that could be used for other critical tasks.
The answer for this new era of high-performance pipeline operations is synergy between all of the software components and integration of the individual software pieces that are used to support end-to-end operations.
Interoperability to Support Workload Analysis
One of the most critical areas of pipeline operations that will be impacted by the new PHMSA rules is supporting workload analysis.
- Can you currently measure workload analysis?
- Is your workload data accurate by controller, console, and shift?
- Are controllers performing accurate Shift Handover?
- Do you need to add additional controllers?
- Do you need to add additional consoles?
These are just some of the most critical questions that pipeline operators and control room managers need to be thinking about in advance of the new PHMSA rules.
Why is this so important? The objective of the new rules is ultimately to support safe pipeline operations across the United States. Workload analysis is a critical component to assess the vigilance of controllers to perform critical tasks in the control room.
The POEMS CRM Suite supports vigilance by tying all of the data together. The CRM Suite picks up information from other tools in the software suite to compile the data that is needed to perform vigilance.
Then, the software performs analysis and generates reports. Operators and control room managers can review activity and logs in particular areas to analyze performance and ensure vigilance in the control room.
All of this happens at the click of a button, as opposed to requiring multiple steps that cost time and reduce accuracy.
The Technical Side of Interoperability
The POEMS CRM Suite boasts a robust technical stack that shares data across the suite. Each of the modules in the suite perform specific tasks; the data is available across the suite to support additional tasks.
- CRMgr module: includes Control Room Management Plan (CRMP), Compliance Log, e-Logbook, and Shift Handover (SHO).
- ALMgr module: includes Alarm Rationalization, Alarm Analysis, and Alarm Philosophy.
- PointMgr module: Point-to-point verification and point configuration.
- FatigueMgr module: Hours of Service (HOS) and Workload Analysis.
Additionally, each of these CRM Suite modules work with our ComplyMgr module to validate high-performance operations to pass the PHMSA audit.
Sample Activity in the POEMS CRM Suite
Consider this example of the interoperability of the POEMS CRM Suite to support workload analysis, alarm management, and compliance.
1. Log entry time/console for Workload Analysis.
2. Logbook creates AOCs logs.
3. Logs entered.
4. Shift start-stop time for Hours of Service.
6. File compliance reported.
7. Controller scheduling.
8. Sort processed alarms.
9. Alarm capture ties into workload analysis.
10. Workload analysis by console.
11. Sort tags.
12. Point-to-point completions create compliance logs.
13. HOS deviations create compliance logs.
14. Document library stores documents for easy retrieval.
15. Assigned reading links Logbook to Compliance logs.
Schedule a Demo of the POEMS CRM Suite
Our team would appreciate the opportunity to provide an educational demo of the POEMS CRM Suite for you and your team.
We understand the unique challenges for pipeline operators in this new era of expanded safety focus. The new rules published by PHMSA have created a clear need for operators to make better use of available technology to achieve high-performance pipeline operation.
We believe in our solution, the POEMS CRM Suite, and the interoperable modules that support each critical area of pipeline operation. Contact us today to discover increased value from your software investment to support safe operations, achieve compliance, and reduce the total cost of ownership.