On any given day, SDG&E gas patrollers cover hundreds of miles of underground facilities to ensure our natural gas pipelines are free of leaks and hazards. As mandated by the California Public Utilities Company, the patrollers perform regular inspections on our equipment to ensure public safety and maintain pipeline integrity for our region’s more than eight thousand miles of natural gas distribution and transmission pipelines.
Safety and Awareness
Some of the biggest challenges gas patrollers encounter in their daily work are dogs, locked gates, inaccessible meters, and people not knowing why SDG&E crews are there. Some customers believe that patrollers would no longer need to access their property when automated meter reading began, but that’s not the case. To provide safe and reliable gas and electric service, meters must be accessible 24 hours a day for visual inspections, testing, maintenance and emergencies.
When gas patrollers work their routes, they may approach the area around your home to survey around the gas meter or area of the property where the gas service runs to the meter. With the help of a portable, infrared-based leak detection survey instrument, designed to detect methane only, and no other hydrocarbons, it does not produce false alarms. Patrollers check gas meters for corrosion, leaks, and any other safety issues. Their mission is to detect small problems before they become big ones.
What to Expect from Gas Patrollers
If you see someone in your yard or near your gas meter and you’re unsure whether the person is an SDG&E gas patroller, check to see if they are wearing SDG&E branded clothing, a safety vest and a company badge for identification. A company vehicle will be in proximity to the Patroller but may not be at the residence.
Gas patrollers will call out as they walk to the meter to announce their arrival and may knock on doors or contact the homeowner by phone to get access to meters behind a gate or confine dogs in the yard if possible. The gas patroller will also leave a door hanger with information to contact the Call Center so they can schedule an appointment to gain access if company equipment is inaccessible.
Gas patrollers do what they do because your safety will always be our top priority.