Fixing leaks repairs more than lines

Published 7:00 am Thursday, June 9, 2016

If you have an infrastructure system with a lot of holes, there’s more being lost than the utility it carries.
Such is the case with the city’s efforts to repair natural gas leaks. Repair work has been ongoing for the past several years, and the savings are substantial.
During Tuesday’s Picayune City Council meeting, one council member asked for an update on how the work is going, and what kind of results have been seen so far.
The public works director had good news; natural gas losses have been reduced from a staggering 33 percent, to less than 9 percent.
Conducting such an extensive repair of the city’s natural gas system involved removing and replacing miles of aging cast iron pipe.
Things break down, and sometimes when they do it not only mean a loss of revenue, but more importantly that situation could pose a hazard to the community.
Recently, there have been news stories about homes exploding due to a natural gas leak. Videos of some of these explosions demonstrate the real danger behind such a catastrophe.
Fortunately, none of these scenarios have played out in Pearl River County.
But had the city not taken action, such a tragedy could have possibly occurred here.
So, city of Picayune officials made a wise choice to invest in the work being done, but that does not mean we are now universally protected from the dangers of a gas leak.
While the city is conducting repairs on their infrastructure, residents still need to be diligent in reporting potential gas leaks because a leak can occur within a home or business where the city has no control.
Fortunately, a chemical is added to natural gas, which has no smell.
The chemical smells of rotten eggs, and provides a way to detect such a leak. So, if you detect such an odor, report it immediately to the local fire department.

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