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B.C. Reg. 56/2013
Oil and Gas Commission
Deposited February 19, 2013
effective June 3, 2013

Oil and Gas Activities Act

Oil and Gas Road Regulation

Note: Check the Cumulative Regulation Bulletin 2015 and 2016
for any non-consolidated amendments to this regulation that may be in effect.

Contents
Part 1 — Definitions and Application
1Definitions
2Oil and gas roads prescribed
Part 2 — Permits and Notice
3Application for permit
4Notice of construction
Part 3 — Construction
5Clearing widths
6Bridges and culverts
7Structural defects or deficiencies on a bridge
8Sign stating maximum load capacity of bridge
9Making and keeping records
10Hazard warning
11Report regarding construction
Part 4 — Maintenance
12Road maintenance: general
13Road maintenance: technical
14Bridge maintenance
15Limited maintenance
Part 5 — Use of Oil and Gas Roads
16Right of access
17Provisions of Motor Vehicle Act applicable to oil and gas roads
18Speed restriction
19Traffic control devices
20Power to temporarily close, restrict access or remove motor vehicles, animals or things
21Contribution to maintenance costs
Part 6 — Deactivation of Oil and Gas Roads
22Deactivation
23Notice of deactivation
24Deactivation requirements
25Maintenance requirements during deactivation
26Hazard warning during deactivation
27Declaration to the commission
Part 7 — Exemptions
28Exemptions by officials

Part 1 — Definitions and Application

Definitions

1  In this regulation:

"Act" means the Oil and Gas Activities Act;

"construction", in respect of an oil and gas road, includes modifications to the road within the road right of way;

"deactivate", in relation to an oil and gas road, means deactivate in accordance with Part 6;

"fish stream" has the same meaning as in the Environmental Protection and Management Regulation;

"maintain", in relation to an oil and gas road, means maintain in accordance with Part 4;

"major culvert" means a culvert crossing a stream or wetland that

(a) is one of the following:

(i) a pipe having a diameter of 2 000 mm or greater;

(ii) a pipe arch having a span greater than 2 130 mm;

(iii) an open bottom arch having a span greater than 2 130 mm, or

(b) has a design discharge rate of 6 m3 per second or greater;

"modification", in relation to an oil and gas road, means the widening of the running surface of the road, the realigning of a portion of the road or the reconstructing of a portion of a road, and includes the installing or replacing of a bridge or major culvert associated with the road;

"motor vehicle" has the same meaning as in section 1 of the Motor Vehicle Act;

"oil and gas road" means a road or a portion of a road prescribed under section 2;

"primary activity" means an oil and gas activity or a related activity other than the construction, maintenance, operation or use of an oil and gas road;

"qualified person" means, in relation to a specified duty, a person who has the qualifications specified by the commission to perform that duty safely and properly;

"rights holder" has the same meaning as in the Consultation and Notification Regulation;

"road permit" means a permit that includes permission to construct or maintain an oil and gas road;

"road permit holder" means a permit holder of a road permit and a person who is otherwise required to maintain an oil and gas road or was required, immediately before the coming into force of this regulation, to maintain an oil and gas road;

"road prism", in relation to a road, means an area consisting of the road surface and any cut slope, ditch and road fill;

"road right of way", in relation to an oil and gas road, means

(a) the area that is shown or described in the permit as the road corridor within which the oil and gas road may be constructed or modified, or

(b) if the permit does not show or describe the area within which the oil and gas road may be constructed or modified, the area 17.5 m of either side of the centre line of the oil and gas road;

"stream" has the same meaning as in the Environmental Protection and Management Regulation;

"traffic control device" means a gate, signal or notice that regulates the operation of a motor vehicle and includes informational, cautionary, restrictive and prohibitory signals and notices;

"wetland" has the same meaning as in the Environmental Protection and Management Regulation.

Oil and gas roads prescribed

2  The following roads are prescribed for the purposes of paragraph (f) of the definition of "oil and gas activity" in section 1 (2) of the Act:

(a) a road or portion of a road that

(i) is constructed or maintained to facilitate the carrying out of a primary activity,

(ii) has not been deactivated, and

(iii) subject to paragraph (b), is not required to be maintained under another enactment or authorization;

(b) a road or portion of a road that, before the coming into force of this regulation, was constructed under an authorization under the Land Act or the Petroleum and Natural Gas Act and is used to carry out a primary activity.

Part 2 — Permits and Notice

Application for permit

3  A person applying for a permit, or an amendment to a permit, to construct or maintain an oil and gas road must submit to the commission

(a) a map identifying the area the applicant wishes to have shown or described in the permit as the road right of way within which the road will be constructed or maintained, and

(b) with respect to a permit to construct a road, information respecting why the area referred to in paragraph (a) was chosen.

Notice of construction

4  (1) A road permit holder must notify the commission, affected land owners and affected rights holders of the construction of an oil and gas road

(a) not more than 30 days and not less than 72 hours before beginning construction, or

(b) if the construction must be carried out expeditiously to address an environmental or operational emergency, as soon as practicable.

(2) A notice under subsection (1) must be in writing and must specify

(a) the location of the road,

(b) the applicable road permit number and any administrative identifier that relates to the road,

(c) a contact name and contact information, and

(d) the date construction will begin or began, as applicable, and the date construction will be completed or was completed, as applicable.

Part 3 — Construction

Clearing widths

5  A road permit holder who constructs an oil and gas road must ensure that the road's clearing widths are within the road right of way and are not less than the width necessary to ensure all of the following:

(a) the safety of permit holders using the oil and gas road;

(b) the integrity of the topography of the area;

(c) the maintenance of drainage of water in the area;

(d) the stability of terrain in the area;

(e) the safe conduct of operations, considering all of the following:

(i) the placement of pits, quarries, landings or waste areas;

(ii) the storage of bridge or culvert material;

(iii) the amount of area required to operate equipment within the clearing width, including equipment turnaround sites;

(iv) the need to remove snow;

(v) the need to construct fencing or other ancillary structures.

Bridges and culverts

6  (1) Subject to subsections (2) to (4), a road permit holder may not construct or install a bridge or culvert on an oil and gas road unless all of the applicable following requirements are met:

(a) the bridge is designed and fabricated in compliance with

(i) the Canadian Highway Bridge Design Code, CAN/CSA-S6, of the Canadian Standards Association, and

(ii) soil properties standards, as they apply to bridge piers and abutments, set out in the Canadian Foundation Engineering Manual;

(b) the culvert is designed and fabricated

(i) in compliance with Canadian Standards Association standard CAN/CSA G401, Corrugated Steel Pipe Products, or section B182.2 of Canadian Standards Association standard CSA B1800-11, Plastic Nonpressure Pipe Compendium, whichever is applicable, or

(ii) so that it is as strong as a culvert designed and fabricated in accordance with subparagraph (i);

(c) the bridge, if it will cross a stream or a fish stream, or the culvert, if it will be in a stream or a fish stream, is designed to pass the highest peak flow of the stream that can reasonably be expected within the return periods set out in column 2 of the following table for the period the road permit holder anticipates the bridge or culvert will remain on the site, as set out opposite in column 1 of the table:

Column 1
Anticipated period bridge or culvert will remain on site
Column2
Peak flow period
bridge or culvert, 3 years or less 10 years
bridge other than a bridge within a community watershed,
more than 3 years but less than 15 years
50 years
bridge within a community watershed, more than 3 years 100 years
bridge, 15 years or more 100 years
culvert, more than 3 years 100 years

(2) A road permit holder may construct or install a bridge that does not comply with subsection (1) (c) if

(a) the bridge is designed to pass expected flows during the period the bridge is anticipated to remain on the site,

(b) the construction, installation and use of the bridge occurs during a period of low flow, and

(c) the bridge, or a component of the bridge that is vulnerable to damage by high flow, is removed before any period of high flow begins.

(3) A road permit holder may construct or install a culvert that does not comply with subsection (1) (c) if

(a) the installation is temporary and the person does not expect to subsequently install a replacement culvert at that location,

(b) the stream in which the culvert is being installed is not a fish stream,

(c) the culvert will pass the flow that will occur during the period the culvert remains on the site,

(d) the installation of the culvert occurs during a period of low flow, and

(e) the culvert is removed before any period of high flow begins.

(4) A road permit holder may construct or install a bridge barrier that does not comply with subsection (1) (a) (i) if the bridge barrier's bridge

(a) is intended primarily for industrial traffic and no pedestrian traffic,

(b) is less than 5m above water,

(c) has good vertical and horizontal alignment, and

(d) is designed to ensure the safety of permit holders.

Structural defects or deficiencies on a bridge

7  A road permit holder must do at least one of the following if, on a bridge that is part of the oil and gas road, a structural defect or deficiency occurs during the construction or maintenance of the road:

(a) correct the defect or deficiency;

(b) close, remove or replace the bridge;

(c) restrict traffic loads to a safe level.

Sign stating maximum load capacity of bridge

8  A road permit holder must, for each bridge that has a known defect or deficiency, place and maintain a sign that

(a) is at a distance from the bridge sufficient to enable users to stop safely before reaching the bridge, and

(b) states the maximum load capacity of the bridge.

Making and keeping records

9  (1) A road permit holder who constructs or installs a bridge or major culvert must do all of the following:

(a) prepare or obtain

(i) pile driving records, if any,

(ii) for new materials used to build the bridge or major culvert, mill test certificates, in-plant steel fabrication drawings and concrete test results, as applicable,

(iii) soil compaction test results, if any, and

(iv) other relevant field and construction data;

(b) prepare as-built drawings of the bridge or major culvert;

(c) retain the information referred to in paragraphs (a) and (b) until at least one year after the date that the road permit holder

(i) submits a declaration under section 27 (1) respecting the oil and gas road, or

(ii) is prohibited under section 23 (4) (b) from deactivating the oil and gas road.

(2) Subject to subsection (3), a road permit holder must retain a copy of records of visual inspections carried out under section 14 (1) and detailed inspections carried out under section 14 (2) of a bridge or major culvert associated with the oil and gas road for at least one year after

(a) the bridge or major culvert is removed from the site, or

(b) the road permit holder

(i) submits a declaration under section 27 (1) respecting the oil and gas road, or

(ii) is prohibited under section 23 (4) (b) from deactivating the oil and gas road.

(3) If a road permit holder is exempt from the requirement to deactivate an oil and gas road, the road permit holder must submit to the commission the documents, drawings and records described in subsections (1) and (2) in respect of the road.

Hazard warning

10  (1) At all times while an oil and gas road is being modified, a road permit holder must have a warning sign posted at each junction of the oil and gas road with another oil and gas road, a road that is required to be maintained under another enactment or authorization or a highway within the meaning of the Transportation Act.

(2) A sign posted under subsection (1) must indicate the portion of the oil and gas road that is being modified.

Report regarding construction

11  Within 60 days of completion of the construction of an oil and gas road under a permit, the road permit holder must submit to the commission a report, in the form and manner specified by the commission, describing the location of the constructed road.

Part 4 — Maintenance

Road maintenance: general

12  Subject to section 15, a road permit holder must perform the maintenance and undertake the modifications necessary to ensure that

(a) the clearing width for the road complies with this regulation,

(b) the road prism and all access structures related to the road are stable,

(c) the bridges, culverts, fords and other structures and works associated with the road are functional and appropriate for the uses of the road, and

(d) the road can be used safely by permit holders.

Road maintenance: technical

13  (1) A road permit holder must

(a) ensure that road surface and slope drainage systems, including inlets, drainage structures, ditches, culverts, bridges, road crowning, insloping and outsloping, are functional,

(b) remove all vegetative growth and cuttings from road surfaces, roadsides and inlets from drainage structures and ditches if

(i) the vegetative growth impedes or reduces sight distance to the extent that the road is not safe for use by permit holders,

(ii) the removal of the vegetative growth is necessary to enable placement of snow that has been removed from the road at a sufficient distance from the road surface to maintain the sight distance that is adequate for the safe use of the road by motor vehicles, or

(iii) the vegetative growth is encroaching on the road surface such that the usable road width has been reduced to the extent that vehicles cannot safely pass each other at road widenings or turnouts,

(c) unless the surface consists of ballast rock surfaces, grade the surface of the oil and gas road to facilitate industrial use, provide proper road surface drainage and prevent pooling on the surface by

(i) grading during industrial use of the road as often as needed, avoiding the creation of berms along shoulders, to provide a road surface that self drains,

(ii) grading and shaping the existing road surface and shoulders, including turnouts,

(iii) placing surface aggregate where necessary to provide a surface that self drains,

(iv) loosening surface materials to a depth sufficient to remove potholes, rutting or washboarding without causing contamination of the surfacing materials with subgrade materials or unsuitable ditch materials, and

(v) grading only when the moisture content is suitable,

(d) maintain turnout size, number and location to accommodate the vehicles that are in regular use on the road, and

(e) ensure that signs, posts and markers, if any, are legible and visible.

(2) If a road permit holder is using the oil and gas road in winter, the road permit holder must

(a) remove snow from all or part of the travelled portion of the road, including sufficient turnouts, to provide for efficient and safe use by permit holders of the road,

(b) remove snow to create breaches in snow berms for wildlife crossings,

(c) not undercut cut slopes,

(d) not blade gravel or other surface materials off of the road,

(e) remove snow only from the portions of the road having roadbed support, including turnouts, and reshape any over-width ploughing as necessary to define the usable width,

(f) if chains on the vehicles used to carry out oil and gas activities are not suitable or sufficient to enable safe use of the frozen oil and gas road, add sand to the bladed road surface as and when required to provide sufficient traction for the vehicles, and

(g) during periods of snowmelt,

(i) wing back or breach snow berms to facilitate surface drainage in a manner that prevents water flow along the road, and

(ii) keep roadbed drainage ditches, drainage dips and culverts functional.

Bridge maintenance

14  (1) A road permit holder must

(a) ensure that a qualified person carries out a visual inspection of each bridge or major culvert associated with the road at least once every year after the bridge or major culvert is constructed, and

(b) make a record of the inspection.

(2) A road permit holder must

(a) ensure that a qualified person carries out a detailed inspection of each bridge or major culvert associated with the road, and

(b) make a record of the inspection,

(i) subject to subparagraph (ii), at least once every 3 years after the bridge or major culvert is constructed, or

(ii) at such intervals as specified in writing by a professional engineer.

(3) The written specification referred to in subsection (2) (b) must be retained by the road permit holder as part of the record of inspection for at least one year after

(a) the bridge or major culvert is removed from the site, or

(b) the road permit holder

(i) submits a declaration under section 27 (1) respecting the oil and gas road, or

(ii) is prohibited under section 23 (4) (b) from deactivating the oil and gas road.

Limited maintenance

15  (1) If a road permit holder temporarily stops using the oil and gas road to carry out a primary activity for a period anticipated to be greater than 6 months, the person is not required to perform the maintenance and undertake the modifications set out in section 12 but must ensure

(a) the structural integrity of the road prism and clearing width are stable, and

(b) the drainage systems of the road are functional

to the extent necessary to ensure there is no material adverse effect on fish, fish habitat, water quality or quantity, wildlife or wildlife habitat.

(2) A road permit holder referred to in subsection (1) must notify the commission not more than 30 days after a stoppage referred to in that subsection, and the notice must specify all of the following:

(a) the location of the road;

(b) the road permit;

(c) a contact name and contact information;

(d) the projected duration of the stoppage.

(3) A road permit holder referred to in subsection (1) must notify the commission when the road permit holder resumes using the oil and gas road.

Part 5 — Use of Oil and Gas Roads

Right of access

16  A road permit holder may not

(a) close the oil and gas road, or

(b) restrict the use of the road by a permit holder or other person,

except as provided under section 20 or to the extent necessary to carry out maintenance on the road as required under this regulation.

Provisions of Motor Vehicle Act applicable to oil and gas roads

17  (1) The following provisions of the Motor Vehicle Act apply to permit holders using an oil and gas road, and the provisions apply as if the road were a highway:

(a) section 1;

(b) section 2 (5), (6) and (7);

(c) section 24 (1);

(d) section 33 (1) insofar as it applies to a driver's licence or a driver's certificate;

(e) section 68;

(f) section 70;

(g) section 73;

(h) section 84;

(i) sections 141 and 142;

(j) sections 144 and 145;

(k) sections 149 and 150;

(l) sections 157 to 160;

(m) section 162;

(n) sections 169 to 172;

(o) sections 185 and 186;

(p) section 194;

(q) sections 206 (1) and (3) and 207;

(r) sections 224 to 229.

(2) For certainty, a permit holder who fails to comply with a provision referred to in subsection (1) may not be charged with an offence, or levied with a penalty, for that failure under the Motor Vehicle Act.

Speed restriction

18  A permit holder must not operate a motor vehicle on an oil and gas road at a speed that

(a) is unsafe for the conditions, or

(b) exceeds the lesser of

(i) 80 km/h, and

(ii) the speed posted on a relevant traffic control device.

Traffic control devices

19  (1) Subject to the terms of the road permit, if any, and section 16, a road permit holder may erect a traffic control device in the form of a signal or notice on the road if the road permit holder considers that the device is necessary to promote the safe use of the road.

(2) An official may erect or order a road permit holder to erect a traffic control device on an oil and gas road if the official considers that the device is necessary to promote the safe use of the road.

(3) Without limiting subsection (1) or (2), a traffic control device may be used in any of the following ways:

(a) to close the road to all traffic or to specified categories or sizes of motor vehicles, including those not engaged in commercial activities;

(b) to close the road totally or for a specified period of time;

(c) to regulate the movement of traffic;

(d) to require the use of 2-way radio systems during certain hours in order to coordinate the movement of traffic, including specifying the radio frequency to be used on portions of an oil and gas road;

(e) to restrict the use of vehicles having characteristics that could damage the oil and gas road or create a safety risk;

(f) to warn drivers of hazardous or unusual conditions existing on an oil and gas road.

(4) A permit holder using an oil and gas road must comply with all traffic control devices on the road.

(5) An official may remove or order a road permit holder to remove a traffic control device on an oil and gas road.

Power to temporarily close, restrict access or
remove motor vehicles, animals or things

20  (1) A road permit holder or the commission may

(a) temporarily close the oil and gas road, or

(b) restrict the use of the oil and gas road

if the action is necessary to address an existing or imminent threat that may

(c) cause damage to the oil and gas road or the environment, or

(d) endanger human life or property.

(2) A road permit holder or the commission may remove a motor vehicle, animal or thing from the road at the expense of the owner of the motor vehicle, animal or thing if the road permit holder or the commission believes that the presence on the road of the motor vehicle, animal or thing may

(a) cause damage to the oil and gas road or the environment,

(b) endanger human life or property, or

(c) prevent or impede a permit holder from using the oil and gas road.

(3) A road permit holder who, under subsection (1), temporarily closes an oil and gas road or restricts its use must

(a) temporarily close the oil and gas road or restrict its use by ensuring

(i) any access control structure erected to restrict motor vehicle traffic

(A) will not be, or become, a hazard to the users of the road, and

(B) is placed in a conspicuous location and clearly visible to the operator of a motor vehicle from a safe stopping distance, and

(ii) signs are posted at locations that give vehicle operators adequate warning of the access control structure,

(b) promptly give notice of the temporary closure or restriction to the commission, and

(c) reopen the oil and gas road or remove the restriction promptly after

(i) the justification for that temporary closure or restriction ceases to exist, or

(ii) the commission requires the reopening or removal.

(4) Nothing in this section

(a) affects the right of the commission to use an oil and gas road at any time, or

(b) authorizes the removal from an oil and gas road of any motor vehicle, animal or thing of the commission.

Contribution to maintenance costs

21  (1) A permit holder who intends to use an oil and gas road maintained by a road permit holder must notify the road permit holder at least 14 days before the intended use will begin.

(2) A permit holder referred to in subsection (1) must provide to the road permit holder referred to in that subsection a reasonable contribution to the expense

(a) of maintaining the oil and gas road to accommodate the permit holder's use of the road,

(b) of modifying the road to accommodate the special needs of the permit holder, if any, and

(c) of repairing any damage to the road caused by the permit holder's use of the road.

(3) On receiving a notice under subsection (1), the road permit holder must provide to the permit holder an estimate of the costs relating to the matters referred to in subsection (2) (a) to (c), including supporting data and records.

Part 6 — Deactivation of Oil and Gas Roads

Deactivation

22  (1) Subject to subsection (2) and section 23 (4) (b), a road permit holder who is permitted to maintain an oil and gas road may deactivate the road at any time.

(2) A road permit holder must deactivate the portion of an oil and gas road that provides access to the site of the well, pipeline or facility of the road permit holder within 2 years of the abandonment of the well or pipeline or the removal of the facility.

(3) A road permit holder who deactivates an oil and gas road must do so in accordance with this Part.

Notice of deactivation

23  (1) A road permit holder who intends to deactivate an oil and gas road must provide written notice of the intention to

(a) users of the road known to the road permit holder,

(b) any applicable land owner, and

(c) the commission.

(2) A notice under subsection (1) must identify the road to be deactivated and specify the date when deactivation will begin.

(3) A road permit holder may not begin deactivating an oil and gas road until at least 14 days have elapsed after providing notice under subsection (1).

(4) On receiving notice under subsection (1), the commission may do one or both of the following:

(a) extend the period referred to in subsection (3);

(b) prohibit the road permit holder from deactivating the road.

Deactivation requirements

24  A road permit holder who deactivates an oil and gas road must do all of the following:

(a) barricade the road surface width in a clearly visible manner to prevent access by motor vehicles, other than all-terrain vehicles;

(b) remove stream pipe culverts and arch culverts;

(c) remove bridge and log or box culvert superstructures;

(d) remove bridge and log or box culvert substructures, if the failure of those substructures would have a material adverse effect on downstream property, improvements or the environment;

(e) stabilize the road prism and the clearing width of the road;

(f) comply with section 19 (1) (c) of the Environmental Protection and Management Regulation.

Maintenance requirements during deactivation

25  (1) A road permit holder who deactivates an oil and gas road must

(a) maintain any portion of the oil and gas road that is not being deactivated, and

(b) for any portion of the oil and gas road that is being deactivated, maintain the portion but only to the extent necessary to ensure that the structural integrity of the road prism and the clearing width are stable and that the drainage systems of the road are functional.

(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), a portion of an oil and gas road is being deactivated when the road permit holder has begun but not completed on that portion of the oil and gas road requirements referred to in section 24.

Hazard warning during deactivation

26  (1) Subject to subsection (3), at all times while an oil and gas road is being deactivated, a road permit holder must have a warning sign posted at each junction of the road with another oil and gas road, a road that is required to be maintained under another enactment or authorization or a highway within the meaning of the Transportation Act.

(2) A warning sign posted under subsection (1) must indicate the portion of the road that is being deactivated.

(3) If a road permit holder is exempted from the requirement under section 24 (a) to barricade the road, the road permit holder must ensure that the sign posted under subsection (1) of this section remains on the site until the later of the following:

(a) the date 12 months after the date deactivation begins;

(b) the date deactivation is completed.

Declaration to the commission

27  (1) A road permit holder who completes deactivation of an oil and gas road must, within 30 days after the completion, submit to the commission a written declaration stating that the road permit holder has complied with

(a) section 24, and

(b) section 19 of the Environmental Protection and Management Regulation, if applicable.

(2) A declaration under subsection (1) must

(a) be signed by the road permit holder, and

(b) specify the date on which the declaration is made.

Part 7 — Exemptions

Exemptions by officials

28  On application or on his or her own motion, an official may exempt, with or without conditions, a road permit holder from one or more provisions of this regulation if the official is satisfied that, in the circumstances,

(a) it is not reasonably practicable to require the road permit holder to comply with the provision, or

(b) the exemption is in the public interest.

[Provisions relevant to the enactment of this regulation: Oil and Gas Activities Act, S.B.C. 2008, c. 36, section 111]