Plains has an operational vision to be the midstream leaders in safe, reliable, efficient and responsible operations.

Three goals direct our efforts toward achieving our U.S. operational vision:

  • Manage Risk – Actively and systematically manage risk to protect people, the environment and our assets while striving to achieve zero incidents.
  • High-Performing Employees and Assets – Consistently deliver reliable, efficient, competitive services through continuous improvement, active collaboration and entrepreneurship.
  • Build Trust – Consistently operate in a manner that builds public trust, reflects our core Values and demonstrates stewardship in the communities where we operate.

To achieve these goals, Plains is actively engaged in the implementation of the American Petroleum Institute’s Recommenced Practice 1173 (RP 1173), which provides a pipeline safety management system framework. This framework guides the way organizations that operate liquids and gas pipelines reveal and manage risk, promote a learning environment and continuously improve pipeline safety and integrity.

With a strong commitment from leadership, Plains began the design and development of its management system in 2014. While the framework incorporates both a safety and an environmental management system, we chose the name Operations Management System (OMS) to reflect the broad, integrated effort with safety as a fundamental value underlying everything we do.  A key feature of our OMS is the Plan-Do-Check-Act cycle, which assists in identifying and managing continuous improvement efforts.   

Our comprehensive OMS supports a systematic, iterative approach to continuously improving our performance, underpinned by the monitoring and reporting of quantitative, deadline-driven improvement metrics in all impacted areas.    


The OMS framework consists of nine elements, along with their associated sub-elements, each of which has specific expectations and requirements for operating safely and reducing risk. 

  • Leadership Commitment – Leaders must demonstrate their commitment, set expectations and drive the execution of operational excellence.
    • Leadership, Culture and Engagement
    • OMS Review and Strategic Planning
    • Responsibility, Accountability and Authority
  • Stakeholder Engagement – We will engage, respect and work with our stakeholders inside and outside of the company to foster a dialogue that is open and meaningful.
    • External Stakeholder Engagement
    • Internal Stakeholder Engagement
  • Risk Management – We will have a high risk awareness and low risk tolerance.
    • Operations Risk Management
    • Legislative and Regulatory Monitoring
    • Design and Construction
    • Environmental and Regulatory Compliance
    • Damage Prevention and Public Awareness
    • Commercial Operating Conditions
    • Security Management
  • Operational Controls – In reviewing operational procedures, we will focus on determining both compliance and effectiveness.
    • Remote Monitoring and Control Room Management
    • Operations and Maintenance
    • Management of Change
    • Safe Work Practices
    • Contractor Management
  • Incident Management – Learning from experience will be a vital component of improving safety performance.
    • Incident Investigation Process
    • Follow-up and Lessons Learned
  • Competence & Training – We will provide development opportunities for employees that build trust and confidence, and reaffirm that our leaders value the safety of employees, contractors and the public.
    • Competency
    • Training
  • Safety Assurance & Continuous Improvement – Business success will be derived through the repeated execution and continuous improvement of key business processes.
    • Performance Management
    • Assessments
    • Audits
    • Management Review
  • Emergency Preparedness & Response – We will plan for a prompt and effective emergency response that minimizes the adverse impacts of an incident to people and the environment, as well as to our assets.
    • Emergency Response Planning
    • Emergency Response Training and Drills
    • Business Continuity Management
  • Information Management – Accurate documentation and record keeping will lead to greater certainty that our assets will perform as expected.
    • Document Management
    • Records Management
    • Data Management

Plains is committed to implementing this framework using the continuous improvement cycle at the core of RP 1173 and our OMS.