Quick Start Guide Natural Gas Utilities


Buried Fuel Line Inspections

Why Address This Issue? Corrosion, neglect, digging incidents, and improper repairs may all result in natural gas leaks from customer-owned fuel lines. New property owners may not know about the location of fuel lines on their property, the history of any damage or repairs to them, or the need for regular fuel line inspections and maintenance. Federal Regulation 49 CFR §192.16 requires natural gas operators that do not maintain their customers’ buried piping to notify their customers at least once, in written form, of the need and importance of this maintenance. That action must be taken within the first 90 days of the customer’s receipt of natural gas service. (Customer piping refers to natural gas piping that is typically downstream from the outlet of the gas meter.) Even when a utility is not responsible for the maintenance of customer-owned buried fuel lines, it may still be a target of litigation for any incidents that result from lack of maintenance of these lines. Educating new customers about buried fuel line maintenance in compliance with 49 CFR §192.16 can help prevent fuel line related incidents.


Developing a Public Safety Communications Program

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