Have you ever come across our crews on your property and wondered what they were doing, or even if they’re allowed to be there?
In order to ensure the safe delivery of natural gas to your home or business, we are required by the Department of Transportation to perform a routine leak inspection and corrosion inspection every three to five years on your property.
We conduct approximately 70,000 of these searches annually. From the inspections, we find leaks that may have otherwise gone unnoticed if our search team hadn’t surveyed these pipes. Corrosion is also a concern, as many of our older pipes are steel and corrode over time.
How will I know if the gas pipes on my property need to be inspected?
We will call your phone with an automated voice notification that says:
“…In the near future, you may see our Gas Leak Survey Specialists or Corrosion Technicians at your property performing routine inspections of the natural gas service line and meters. It is not necessary to be home for this inspection…”
If we are unable to access the lines and/or a main at the time of the survey, we will leave behind a door hanger instructing you to call and set an appointment. We may also have to follow up with a phone call or certified letter.
What does this survey entail?
A typical leak survey involves walking over the entire underground gas pipe from the gas main in the street or alley to your gas meter, often requiring access to much of your front or backyard or even both. Depending on the type of survey that is needed, we may use a probe, leak detector, or datalogger (an electronic device that records data). A typical survey does not require digging, and the end results are not noticeable. On average, a survey will last anywhere from a few minutes to 20 minutes. However, if a leak or corrosion is found, additional work will need to be performed.
Are utility representatives allowed on my property without my permission?
As is standard with other utility companies nationwide, our tariffs state that authorized employees have “full and free access to the premises of the customer at all reasonable hours.” While you may be curious precisely when we will access your property, due to the time sensitive nature of these searches, survey schedules change at a moment’s notice, and crews need to perform these searches as quickly and safely as possible.
Since you no longer see our meter readers on a frequent basis, you’re probably less familiar with our other crews in your area. Don’t hesitate to ask for identification. Here are some ways you can identify our gas leak search and corrosion employees:
- Photo identification badges with an employee ID number
- Uniform with a navy blue jacket, tan shirt, and our logo
- Employees are typically on a walking route without an accompanying utilities vehicle and will be carrying surveying instrumentation.
- If you are still concerned about the validity of the visit, you can call us at 448-4800.
If we left a door hanger because we were unable to gain access to your property, call the number provided to schedule an appointment. When our employees arrive for the appointment, please leave gates unlocked and keep dogs away. Ultimately our goal is to keep you safe, so we ask for that same courtesy in return. We need to perform these searches in a timely manner in order to continue to provide the safe and reliable delivery of natural gas to your home.
To report a natural gas leak or emergency, leave the area immediately and call 9-1-1 or 448-4800.