Warning Letter to Municipality of Potton Township

File OF-Surv-Vio-UX-2016-067
NEB File : UX-2016-067

27 January 2017

Information not available
Information not available
Potton Township
Mansonville, Quebec  J0E 1X0

Information not available
Information not available
Potton Township
Mansonville, Quebec  J0E 1X0

Warning Letter to Municipality of Potton Township

Dear Sirs:


On 24 May 2016, Montreal Pipeline Ltd. (MPL) reported an unauthorized activity to the National Energy Board (Board or NEB) as per subsections 13(1) and (2) of the Pipeline Crossing Regulations (PCR), Part II. The reported incident was for a ground disturbance by Information not available on behalf of Potton Township Public Works on 20 May 2016.

MPL reported that it witnessed work being completed near Chemin de la Mine, in the municipality of Potton Township, Quebec, without the company's authorization or the presence of a company inspector to supervise the work, as required by ss. 6(b) of the PCR, Part I.

Summary of findings

Upon examining the information supplied by the parties as part of our review into this incident, the NEB determined that the public works department understood that the work could not commence without the company’s authorization. However, in the statement from Information not available, Information not available of Public Works on 12 August 2016, we discovered that a senior municipal official, specifically Information not available,Information not available, intervened and directed that the work continue although no company representative was on site, in violation of the NEB’s Pipeline Crossing Regulations (PCR, Part I).

More specifically, the NEB has determined that:

  1. Potton Township was in non-compliance with subsection 112(1) of the National Energy Board Act (NEB Act) and subsection 6(b) of the PCR (Part I):
    1. Subsection 112(1) of the NEB Act states that “subject to subsection (5), no person shall, unless leave is first obtained from the Board, excavate using power operated equipment within thirty metres of a pipeline.”
    2. The PCR Part I, in subsection 6(b) provides that such leave “is not required for an excavation, other than an excavation referred to in section 7, if the excavator obtains written permission from the pipeline company prior to the excavation and accepts any conditions set out in the permission.”
  2. The municipality's procedure and processes are appropriate for working around federally regulated pipelines, however, they were not followed at the time that the incident occurred due to on-site direction provided by the Information not available.
  3.  This is the second incident involving Potton Township. On 9 August 2012, the first incident of this type was reported (file number UX2012-072): an MPL employee discovered that work had been done within 30 metres of an MPL pipeline by municipal employees. At that time, the NEB provided awareness material for working around federally regulated pipelines to the Municipality of Potton Township.


This warning indicates a non-compliance with s. 112 of the NEB Act and ss. 6(b) of the PCR, Part I. It is intended to bring this matter to your attention in order for you to take the necessary preventative measures to ensure compliance with National Energy Board Act, and its associated Regulations.

Potton Township and municipal officials must ensure that the procedure and processes governing excavation work near federally regulated pipelines are followed, and that those who perform excavation work are informed of safe work practices in accordance with section 112 of the NEB Act and measures set out in the NEB’s Damage Prevention Regulations (Authorizations). These Regulations came into effect on 19 June 2016 and replaced the PCR.

We appreciate your prompt attention to this matter, and for the changes you have implemented as a result of this incident. Please be advised that this letter will form part of the Potton Township’s compliance history, and any future reported incidences may result in further enforcement action, including administrative monetary penalties, in accordance with the NEB’s enforcement policy and procedures. You can find more information on the Board’s compliance and enforcement activities here: Compliance and Enforcement .

If you have any questions regarding this review or any related topic, please contact Information not available, by telephone toll-free at 1-800-899-1265 or directly at Information not available, or by email atInformation not available@cer-rec.gc.ca.

Yours sincerely,

Original signed by

Information not available
Director, Audit, Enforcement and Investigations
Systems Operations Business Unit

Cc: Information not available, Les Pipe Lines Montréal Ltée.
Information not available, Régie du bâtiment du Québec
Information not available, ministère des Affaires municipales et de l’Occupation du territoire, Québec
Information not available, National Energy Board

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