HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — At a state Senate hearing on pipeline safety, a senator from Chester County urged a representative of the energy industry to pressure Sunoco Pipeline to improve its handling of problems related to the controversial Mariner East project.

A pipeline safety expert with the Marcellus Shale Coalition told state senators that pipelines are the safest way to move energy products. Democrat Andy Dinniman of Chester County agreed, but argued that Sunoco’s troubles with Mariner East are making that notion a tough sell with the public.

“I don’t disagree that pipelines are the safest way,” Dinniman said. “But if you want it to be a reality, your companies need to tell Sunoco ‘you’re screwing it up for the rest of us. And you’re hurting the people in Pennsylvania.’ And that’s what any trade group needs to do to protect its own interests and in the process also protect the interests of the citizens.”

Suburban Republican John Rafferty urged action on several bills he’s introduced to address pipeline safety, including a measure that would establish requirements for notification of residents.