Evidently the grade separation project for the berm only 15 years ago has caused PG & E to list a section of their gas pipeline as the 46th riskiest section in the entire state of California.

From the NY Times:

” many experts and studies say is weak oversight of gas pipelines in the United States, a problem that has contributed to hundreds of pipeline episodes that have killed 60 people and injured 230 others in the last five years. Those figures do not include the final toll of the explosion of another Pacific Gas and Electric pipeline this month in San Bruno, Calif., that left seven people dead and more than 50 injured.”

Here is a link to that article along with links to additional reporting:

NY Times

Mercury News

San Mateo Daily Journal

SF Examiner

PG & E’s map has the number 18 next to this troublesome section, although the article states that it is the 46th riskiest section.  Whatever the number is, it is very unsettling.  Hopefully the mayor and city council will move forcefully on this issue, get the section repaired and will make sure that any HSR work or any other potential development along the railroad corridor is strictly monitored for gas line and electrical safety.  It is very disturbing that something done as little as 15 years ago is considered such a high risk.  The reporting mentions El Camino and Brittan but the video is showing a relief gas line on Old County Road south of Brittan.

From the Mercury News:

A major intersection near downtown San Carlos sits above natural gas pipeline segments listed by PG&E as among the 100 riskiest in the state.

That news surprised San Carlos officials, who say they intend to pepper Pacific Gas & Electric Co. with questions about how problematic those segments are and what the utility plans to do about them.

Although PG&E representatives stressed Monday that segments on the list don’t pose an imminent public danger, local officials and residents weren’t so easily assured. The Sept. 9 natural gas pipeline explosion that killed four people, left three unaccounted for and destroyed more than three dozen homes in San Bruno was still fresh in everyone’s minds.

In San Carlos, a pipeline segment near Brittan Avenue and El Camino Real was ranked No. 46 due to such factors as its age, welding or fitting type, and the material it is made out of.

“I hate that they are now looking at the problem because there was a major catastrophe,” said San Carlos resident Lori Field. “Having a young child and living in this area and living near the pipeline, of course I’m concerned.”

San Carlos officials said they do not know what exactly is wrong with the segment, but expect to learn more today. The intersection near downtown is a transportation hub — Caltrain tracks lie just east of the El Camino Real corridor, and Brittan Avenue exits onto southbound Highway 101. A Jack-in-the-Box and a Shell station straddle Brittan on the west side of El Camino.

PG&E documents show that the company is doing an engineering review of the site. Depending on the findings, it may repair or replace the segment.

Robert Weil, San Carlos’ public works director, said it was the first he had heard of a potentially problematic pipe.

Gas leaks and smells can be reported to PG&E at (800) 743-5000. A special hotline to learn more about gas transmission lines has been set up at (888) 743-7431.