Massachusetts Gas Disaster
On September 18th, 2018, in the Merrimack Valley in Northeastern Massachusetts, work crews for the Columbia Gas Company were in the final stages of replacing cast iron pipes (that date back to the early 1900's) with a new set of plastic gas-distribution pipes. What those workers didn't realize was that they needed to not only switch out the pipes but to also switch the sensors. To regulate the pressure in this old school system, control system sensors were placed inside the pipes and the data was then sent back to the regulators. By cutting off the valve the control system saw pressure falling in the old pipes, so it opened up the regulator. In mere moments the natural gas supply lines pressure soared thus making pilot lights into blow torches and stove gas burners into towering infernos.
One person lost their life, dozens were injured and over a hundred structures were damaged. Through the evening emergency crews responded to approximately 80 fires. Gas services were shut off to 8,600 customers, to avoid igniting any lingering gas, which of course caused an evacuation and a state of emergency was declared.
Columbia gas took over the locally owned gas company but moved the monitoring system to Ohio. This move was probably done to save money, money which should have been spent on a corresponding control system to allow Ohio monitors to shut off regulators and valves remotely. Presumably, this company has completed this type of work before, so you would hope that the technicians and definitely the supervisor would realize that by not changing the sensors at the same time as the pipes, disaster could strike. Every technician can't know enough to design an entire system, that's what engineers are for, but techs and supervisors should know the basic technology they are working on.
Since the disaster in September, many Columbia Gas customers are still without gas. The company's deadline was in November but has recently been pushed to December 16th. It's safe to say Columbia Gas will be paying for this mistake for a very long time, unfortunately so will the residents of Northeastern Massachusetts.
The Future of Remote Sensing Technology
In 1972 NASA launched its first satellite into space. With more than 40 years of continuous data, many industries are jumping on board to utilize its imagery and change the way the world operates. It is estimated that more than 2,500 satellites are orbiting the earth, providing data to a variety of industries from agriculture to financial advising companies. Remote sensing imagery is booming and has developed very specific products for individual organizations. For example, during hurricane Harvey, flood models were created which then helped insurance companies, engineers and crisis management officials rebuild and prepare for the next big disaster. How many lives could be saved with this technology?
Remote sensing technology is an excellent example of the information we can gather beyond what we are capable of perceiving on our own. The ability to detect the moisture content of soil or monitor glaciers for climate change would take far longer and cost more to have an individual research when the data could be available in seconds. All possible by using satellite imagery. Can you imagine the opportunities for someone who could estimate crop productions in a region, a country or the entire world? That information would drastically affect economies, financial markets, and possibly end world hunger.
The amount of available data will increase drastically. Rapidly changing technology is making it possible to use smaller satellites which drop prices and open opportunities to smaller companies in both the commercial and private sector. It won’t be long until everyone will have access to space, which will change every aspect of our lives by using only a computer and internet access.
Oklahoma Engineering Renewal FAQ
How many PDHs are required for Professional Engineers in Oklahoma?
Engineers in Oklahoma are required to complete 30 PDH every two years.
When do Oklahoma engineers renew their license?
In Oklahoma, engineers must renew by the last day of the original licensure month.
Do your engineering courses qualify for credit with the state of Oklahoma?
Yes, the Oklahoma State State Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors does not pre-approve providers of engineering continuing education courses. Each engineer has the power to determine which courses meet the board requirements and their educational needs. Our courses include a short quiz at the end of each PDH that fulfill the requirement to show evidence of achievement and completion. Quizzes are graded automatically, and certificates are available immediately upon completion.
What content is approved for PDHs in Oklahoma?
Technical, managerial, and ethical content that is relevant to the practice of engineering is approved as continuing education for engineers in Oklahoma. Business skills, professional development skills, computer skills not related specifically to engineering, and subjects that are "elementary" or entry level are not accepted.
Who stores my engineering continuing education records?
Technically each engineer is responsible for keeping track and submitting their own certificates, BUT WE STORE ALL CERTIFICATES INDEFINITELY and they can always be accessed for free. PDH completion records must be maintained for a minimum of 4 years.
How do I renew my Oklahoma professional engineer's license?
License renewals can be completed online at https://pay.apps.ok.gov/pels/renewal/index.php
Who is in charge of engineer's licenses in the state of Oklahoma?
Oklahoma Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors
220 NE 28th Street, Suite 120
Oklahoma City, OK 73105
Phone: (405) 521-2874
Delaware Engineering Continuing Education
How many hours of CPC are required for Professional Engineers in Delaware?
Engineers in Delaware are required to complete 24 hours every two years including:
*At least 3 and no more than 6 hours must be related to professional ethics
*No more than 9 hours can be related to business skills or project management
*The remaining hours must be technical courses related to the individual’s area of focus
When do Delaware Engineers renew their license?
Delaware Engineers renew their license June 30th of even-numbered years (2018, 2020, 2022...)
Are online courses approved for Delaware Engineering CPC's?
Yes, Internet courses are specifically mentioned by the board as an approved form of continuing education for Delaware engineers.
Do your engineering courses qualify for credit with the state of Delaware?
Yes, the Delaware Association of Professional Engineers does not pre-approve providers of engineering continuing education courses. Each engineer has the power to determine which courses meet the board requirements and their educational needs. Our courses include a short quiz at the end of each CPC course that fulfills the requirement to show evidence of achievement and completion. Quizzes are graded automatically, and certificates are available immediately upon completion.
How do I renew my Delaware Professional Engineer's License?
License renewals are completed online at https://www.dape.org/Users/login/type:ProfessionalEngineer
Where can I get Continuing Education for Delaware Engineering License?
Visit our website at www.engineeringcredits.com/delaware/
Louisiana Professional Engineers License Renewal FAQs
How do I renew my Louisiana Professional Engineer license?
Professional Engineers in Louisiana are required to renew their licenses online at http://www.lapels.com/Renewals.html. For engineers whose licenses are set to expire on March 31st the online license renewal system opened on February 1st.
When does my Louisiana Engineer license expire?
All Professional Engineers licenses expire biannually on either March 31st or September 30th.
What is CPD?
Continuing education for professional engineers in Louisiana is called Continuing Professional Development (CPD). In most states, it is called Professional Development Hours, or PDH. Louisiana Engineers are required to complete 30 hours of CPD every two years. Starting in 2017 the mandatory 30 hours must be split evenly so engineers complete 15 hours in each calendar year. Of the 15 hours each year, one hour must cover ethics. Licensees who design buildings or building systems must also include 4 hours of life safety code, building codes or ADA accessibility. No more than 8 hours can be earned in a single day.
Where can I get the CPD required to renew my Louisiana Engineer license?
ePDHonline.com has a wide variety of articles that can be used to fulfill your CPD requirement. All you have to do is read the article, take a short quiz and you instantly receive a certificate of completion that denotes your credit. Click here to get started now.