Gas Leak Detection Survey

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Map of the 2020 walking gas survey area.

The City of Palo Alto Utilities (CPAU) begins its annual gas leak survey of the City in mid-April each year. This routine inspection of our gas distribution system is conducted every year as required by Department of Transportation Pipeline Safety Regulations and is carried out to ensure the safety of all who live and work in Palo Alto. Two types of gas leak surveys are performed every year; a walking survey of half of the residential areas and a mobile survey of all business districts and mains. Approximately one-half of the City is covered every year by the walking survey so that the entire gas distribution system can be reviewed in a two-year period.

The City contractor, Manesco Corporation, walks residential areas to check for gas leaks along gas service lines, gas meters and covers. This walking survey occurs between April and September. View the map of this year’s survey area. After the walking survey is complete, the contractor begins the mobile surveying of natural gas service points, gas service lines, and meters in all business districts and surveys all CPAU’s gas mains.

In the end, over 200 miles of gas main pipeline will be checked through this thorough review. If any gas leaks are found, they are documented and repaired according to CPAU’s policies. 

If a gas meter is inaccessible, the surveyor will leave a door hanger requesting that the resident contact CPAU to schedule a time for Manesco to return and complete the survey. Customers are asked to call our Gas Utility Operations for non-emergencies at (650) 838-2838 Monday through Thursday, 6:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., or (650) 496-6982 on Fridays from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. with any questions or concerns. If you suspect a Utilities emergency, please contact Dispatch at (650) 329-2579.

As a reminder, all City contractors and surveyors carry CPAU identification cards.

More information on gas and other utility safety items can be found on the City of Palo Alto's Safety page.

Gas Safety Awareness Survey: In addition to the mobile and walking gas leak surveys that we conduct every year, CPAU also surveys its customers for their awareness about gas safety. This is typically conducted through automated telephone surveying. The purpose of these phone surveys is to ensure that our customers are aware of what to do if they smell gas, suspect a gas leak, and have general knowledge about gas safety. These calls are typically conducted during late summer or fall.