As part of our commitment to your safety, every year from May to October, we inspect thousands of kilometers of our pipelines as part of our Natural Gas Line Survey Program. Our employees visit homes and businesses walking the path of the natural gas distribution lines using sensitive detection equipment to check for potential underground and above ground leaks.
Although the method we’re using today is dependable, we wanted to explore new technologies to provide even greater accuracies and efficiencies. That’s why last fall, we teamed up with Picarro, an industry leader for data-driven methane detection, to trial the Picarro Surveyor. Their equipment is mounted on a vehicle and we can drive through areas and collect this information more efficiently. The Picarro Surveyor uses a special laser technique and sophisticated data analytics to help detect natural gas leaks and is 1,000 times more sensitive than the technology we’re using today. And since the Picarro Surveyor collects data four times faster than the technology we’re using today, we’re no longer inhibited by how fast we can walk!
Traditionally, to inspect our lines, we might have had to enter your yard to check the pipeline up to your meter. Now, unless the surveyor detects a leak in the area, we no longer need access to your property. So, you’ll have less surprise visits from our team as they complete their work!
With efficiencies and benefits we’ve found in our trial with the mobile line survey equipment, we’ve decided to begin integrating this technology in Grande Prairie and some of the northern Alberta communities we serve.