FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE -- June 15, 2020
Contact: Kevin Kelly (573) 751-9300
PSC Grants Spire Temporary Waiver Request
JEFFERSON CITY---The Missouri Public Service Commission has granted Spire Missouri, Inc.’s (Spire) request for a temporary waiver of compliance with certain natural gas safety rules and certain Commission orders pertaining to inspections and replacements. Spire sought the temporary waiver due to the COVID-19 pandemic stating that COVID-19 social distancing orders and guidelines obstruct its timely completion of some requirements because of difficulty accessing customer premises.
Spire sought a temporary waiver of certain provisions governing replacement programs for unprotected steel service lines and yard lines; unprotected steel lines and mains; and cast iron lines and mains. Spire also sought a temporary waiver of compliance with certain provisions of Commission rules regarding the frequency of inspections to monitor atmospheric corrosion and distribution systems-leakage surveys. Based upon a review of Spire’s application and the PSC Staff’s recommendation, the Commission determined a temporary waiver from compliance, with appropriate limitations and conditions, will not compromise gas safety.
Under the Commission’s decision, Spire will be required to conduct weekly odorant intensity tests in affected areas and provide notice of replacement delays to customers. Despite the waiver, Spire will be required to complete timely replacements whenever possible, identifying facilities that can be safely replaced and complete the timely replacement of those facilities. Spire will also be required to file a comprehensive list of cast iron main replacements and unprotected steel service and yard line replacements to be delayed pursuant to the temporary waiver. The temporary waiver has been granted through December 31, 2020 for the Spire West service area and through May 31, 2021 for the Spire East service area.
The temporary waiver of compliance with certain provisions of Commission rules regarding the frequency of inspections to monitor atmospheric corrosion and surveys to control leakage in distribution systems, is limited to facilities inside customer premises and does not apply to facilities outside customer premises. Spire will be required to continue timely inspections of these facilities whenever feasible. The natural gas company will also be required to provide notice of inspection delays, conduct weekly odorant intensity tests in affected areas and bring all facilities into compliance by no later than December 31, 2020.
Spire East provides natural gas service to approximately 654,400 customers in the City of St. Louis as well as the Missouri counties of St. Louis, St. Charles, Butler, Iron, Franklin, Jefferson, Madison, Crawford, St. Francois and Ste. Genevieve.
Spire West provides natural gas service to approximately 517,500 customers in Andrew, Barry, Barton, Bates, Buchanan, Carroll, Cass, Cedar, Christian, Clay, Clinton, Dade, DeKalb, Greene, Henry, Howard, Jackson, Jasper, Johnson, Lafayette, Lawrence, McDonald, Moniteau, Pettis, Platte, Ray, Saline, Stone and Vernon counties.