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Pipeline Safety

From fueling our cars to heating our homes, natural gas and oil are part of everyday American life. Pipelines are the safest and most efficient way to transport these products across our nation. Out of sightand out of mind, they are an integral part of our country’s ever-expanding energy infrastructure. These underground transportation highways fill a vital public need by transporting natural gas and petroleum products to heat homes, fuel electric generation plants, power vehicles, and increase U.S. energy security.

It is important for individuals living or working near pipelines to contribute to pipeline safety by knowing how to recognize pipeline locations in their area, recognizing unauthorized activity or abnormal conditions near pipelines, and knowing how to react 
in the unlikely event of a pipeline leak or emergency.




Identifying Pipelines  
Underground natural gas pipelines are sometimes identified by markers placed at intervals along pipeline rights-of-way. Markers display 24-hour emergency telephone numbers and might provide other identifying information. They are generally placed where needed to indicate the presence of a pipeline, such as where a pipeline easement intersects a street, railroad, or river, and in heavily congested areas. Pipeline markers are important to your safety. 

 It's a federal crime to willfully deface, damage, remove, or destroy any pipeline sign or right-of-way marker. While the markers are very helpful for indicating the presence of pipelines in the area, they don't show the exact location, depth, or how many pipelines are in the right-of-way. Don't rely solely on the presence or absence of a pipeline marker. You must still call 811 before beginning any excavation projects. 


Be familiar with these markers and what they provide:


The product transported in the pipeline 

The name of the pipeline operator 

The telephone number where the operator can be reached in an emergency 

Markers clear




Pipeline Right of Way

A pipeline right-of-way is a strip of land over and around a pipeline where some of the property owner’s legal rights have been granted to the pipeline company for inspection, repair and maintenance of the pipeline.

A right-of-way, or easement, agreement provides a permanent, limited interest in the land that enables the pipeline company to operate, test, inspect, repair, maintain, replace and protect the pipeline on the property owned by others. Generally the pipeline company’s rights-of-ways extend 25 feet from each side of a pipeline unless special conditions exist. Right-of-ways must be accessible at all times to company personnel.

Keep it Clear
Any object that hinders a right-of-way is an ‘encroachment’ and may be removed from a right-of-way without compensation or replacement. Refrain from placing any objects including, but not limited to, fences, sheds, locks, structures, ponds, pools, paths, trees, shrubs, etc., on a pipeline right-of-way.


Damage to a Pipeline or Meter  

Leaking gas from any damaged pipeline

or gas meter could cause a fire, explosion, property damage, and serious bodily injury.

Follow these guidelines if you encounter a leaking gas pipe or meter:

• DON'T light a match, candle or cigarette.

• DON'T turn electrical devices on or off, including light switches.

• DON'T start an engine or use any device, including a telephone, which could cause a spark.

• Safely abandon any motorized or powered equipment or vehicles. DO NOT use or turn off any equipment that could cause a spark. Motorized or electrically powered equipment or vehicles may create an ignition source if a gas leak is present. Gas leaking from a plastic pipe can create static electricity that can ignite the gas.

• IMMEDIATELY EVACUATE the area, and from a safe location call York County Natural Gas 24/7 at 1-866-201-1001.

• CALL 911 promptly after evacuating the area if the damage results in a natural gas leak that may endanger life, cause bodily harm, or cause property damage.

• DO NOT attempt to control the leak or repair the damaged pipe or meter. 

Even if you do not suspect a leak, but you suspect damage to the pipeline, you should call YCNGA at 1-866-201-1001, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.




For information on transmission pipelines in your area, visit the National Pipeline Mapping System.
Link to https://www.npms.phmsa.dot.gov/ 


Suspect a Leak?

If you do, leave the premises immediately and call the dedicated emergency line from a cell phone or a neighbor's phone:


or call 911 

Quick Guide: Signs of a Natural Gas Leak

What You See

  Abnormally high pilot flame

  Vapor cloud/mist

  Dirt/debris blown in air

  Collection of dead insects

  Abnormal dead/dying vegetation

What You Smell
  Rotten egg-like odor
What You Hear
  Unusual hissing/roaring

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