Everyday Safety Tip: Call 811 before you dig, even in your own yard
Whether you’re planting a garden, building a fence or remodeling your home no project is too small to call. Always call 811
at least two working days before starting any project that involves digging to have underground utility lines located and marked for free.
PG&E operates, monitors and maintains natural gas distribution and transmission pipelines across California. Our larger transmission pipelines carry gas from one part of the state to another and connect to our distribution system. These smaller distribution lines deliver natural gas to your homes and businesses. Your safety is our top priority.
PG&E is committed to becoming the safest, most reliable gas system in the nation. We have implemented a number of programs and standards to modernize and improve the safety of our gas system. But we can’t do it alone. You play a critical role in natural gas safety. Learn ways you can make gas safety a priority every day.Do You Know How to Locate a Natural Gas Pipeline Near You?
You can find PG&E’s larger transmission pipelines near you by locating pipeline markers. Markers include an emergency number and indicate the need for extra care.
These markers specify the approximate location, but not all pipelines follow a straight path between markers.
Our online map
shows all of our transmission pipelines. You can view any location in our service area—your home, place of work or any other areas of interest—to see if transmission pipelines run nearby. Also, the National Pipeline Mapping System
, shows the location of all transmission pipelines in the United States, viewable by county, zip code or street address.
If you or your contractor accidently digs into a gas pipeline, do not attempt to stop the flowing gas or extinguish any fire. Leave the area immediately and move to a safe location. Then call 911
to notify local police and fire and contact PG&E at 1-800-743-5000
.Can You Spot a Gas Leak?
PG&E regularly inspects all of our pipelines to check for possible leaks or other signs of damage. As an additional safety precaution, we also add a sulfur-like odor to natural gas. Smell:
If you smell this distinctive "rotten egg" odor, move to a safe location and immediately call 911
and PG&E at 1-800-743-5000
. But don’t rely on your nose alone.Sound:
Always pay attention to hissing, whistling or roaring sounds coming from underground or from a gas appliance.Sight:
Other signs include dirt spraying into the air, continual bubbling in a pond or creek or in soil after a rainfall, and dead or dying vegetation in an otherwise moist area.What Do You Do If There’s a Gas Leak?
You can help prevent a natural gas pipeline fire. If you suspect a gas leak, leave the area immediately and move upwind to a safe place.
Then call 911
to notify local police and fire and contact PG&E at 1-800-743-5000
. Warn others nearby to stay away from the area. Do not operate any device until you are a safe distance away; especially ones that might create a spark such as cell phones, matches, electric switches, doorbells, radios, televisions and garage door openers. How Can You Prevent Pipeline Damage?
Every six minutes an underground utility line is damaged because someone decided to dig without first calling 811
Even if you are planting a new bush or digging a fence post in your own yard, you must always call 811 Underground Service Alert (USA) at least two working days before you dig. This free program notifies local utility companies to mark the location of underground lines so you can safely dig and prevent damage (usanorth811.com
). (pls make the url in the parens live) Once the underground lines are marked, remember to dig with care using appropriate hand-digging tools near the pipeline. For your safety, use hand tools when digging within 24 inches of the outside edge of our pipelines. Leave utility flags, stakes or paint marks in place until you’ve finished digging.Safety is PG&E’s Highest Responsibility
We maintain a comprehensive safety and monitoring program to ensure the safety of our natural gas system. We monitor our gas pipeline operations 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and conduct regular inspections and surveys of our pipelines. This is one of many programs we undertake as part of our commitment to provide safe and reliable natural gas service for our customers.To learn more
about our comprehensive safety and monitoring program.Watch a video
with tips for how to safely dig near underground pipelines.For more information about gas pipeline safety, contact us at the numbers below:
For assistance in English please call 1-888-743-7431
Para ayuda en español, por favor llame al 1-800-660-6789
Our Third Party Notification service allows you to name a friend or relative to receive duplicate copies of past due payment notices. The designated person is not responsible for paying the bill but can contact Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) to help resolve the issue. For more information
or call 1-800-743-5000
Get more baseline energy at the lowest price for qualified PG&E residential customers. To qualify for Medical Baseline, a California-licensed physician must certify that you or a full-time resident in your home is:
For details or to apply
- Dependent on life-support equipment while at home.
- A paraplegic, hemiplegic, quadriplegic or multiple sclerosis patient with special heating and/or cooling needs.
- A scleroderma patient with special heating needs.
- A person being treated for a life-threatening illness or compromised immune system with special heating and/or cooling requirements to sustain the patient’s life or prevent deterioration of the patient’s medical condition.
or call 1-800-743-5000
Gas lines can intersect with your sewer line
New service lines, like gas, electric and cable TV, are usually installed by drilling holes horizontally beneath the ground. This helps minimize sidewalk and landscaping damage. Issues can occur when the new pipe or cable accidentally drills through another underground pipe or cable—this is called a cross bore. This is an industry-wide issue for all underground utility providers.
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) installs our smaller natural gas lines with underground drilling. We participate in the Underground Service Alert to help prevent digging into other service lines. This free program notifies local utility companies to mark the location of underground lines so you can safely dig and prevent damage (visit usanorth811.com
). Some utilities, such as sewer or storm water systems, are not required by law to mark their lines and can go unmarked.Why this is a safety concern
In rare cases, our gas lines may intersect through a customer’s sewer line. The gas line can obstruct the flow and may eventually lead to a blockage or backup. A natural gas leak can occur if a plumber damages a gas line cross bore while cleaning a sewer line. For sewer and natural gas safety
.Preventing, identifying and repairing cross bores
PG&E has a dedicated program to proactively identify and repair cross bores through wastewater system inspections. We also use video cameras to inspect some of our newly installed gas lines. If we identify a natural gas cross bore, PG&E will cover the cost of any associated sewer line repairs. This is part of PG&E’s continued commitment towards providing safe and reliable gas service.Do you have a sewer blockage or backup?
A clogged sewer line may be the result of a cross bore with a gas line: so for your safety, take precautions before any sewer cleaning. Talk to your plumber or contractor and encourage them to:
Did you discover a gas line intersecting your sewer line?Stop all work immediately
- Review the online information.
- Use a camera to assess the cause of the blockage.
- Clear without a cutting tool when working on both sewer lines and drains by using a plumbing snake or water jet.
- Call PG&E at 1-800-743-5000 if they have any questions or concerns.
and call 1-800-743-5000
to alert the PG&E representative that you have identified a cross bore. We will safely remove the gas line and make any necessary repairs.
If you or your contractor accidentally damage a gas line, do not attempt to stop the flowing gas or extinguish any fire. Leave the area immediately and move to a safe location. Then call 911
to notify local authorities and contact PG&E at 1-800-743-5000
. Do you know the signs of a gas leak?
We monitor our gas pipeline operations 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from our control center and we add a sulfur-like odorant to help detect leaks.SMELL:
A rotten egg smell.SOUND:
A hissing, whistling or roaring sound.SIGHT:
Dirt blowing into the air or continual bubbling in water (such as in your toilet bowl).
If you suspect a gas leak, immediately warn others and leave the area. Do not use a flame or any electrical device, as a spark could ignite the gas. Once you are in a safe location, immediately call 911
and then call PG&E at 1-800-743-5000.