PSE&G: Blocked Sewer? It could be a cross bore.
What is a cross bore?
A sewer cross bore is what results when a natural gas pipe is accidentally installed through the sewer pipe to your home. This can happen when a natural gas utility installs a gas service pipe underground from the street to your meter, using trenchless technology. When a sewer line is not marked properly, it is possible for the gas to be installed through a sewer pipe.
While natural gas cross bores are rare and pose no immediate risk, over time the sewer may clog. Using a mechanical rotary device or rooter, to clear the clog may cause damage to the natural gas pipeline and create a serious hazard.
Before cleaning out a sewer:
*A video inspection camera should be used to identify the sewer obstruction. Do not use a rotary device to clear the sewer until the obstruction is identified.
*Call 811 at least three business days prior to sewer work to have underground utilities identified at no charge.
*If you suspect that a sewer blockage is the result of a natural gas or underground cross bore, call PSE&G at 1-800-880-PSEG (7734).
Be alert for signs of a natural gas leak:
*A hissing noise
*A natural gas or ‘rotten egg’ smell
*Bubbling water in a toilet, sink or other standing water
If you suspect a natural gas leak:
*Leak the area immediately
*Call 911 and PSE&G at 1-800-880-PSEG (7734)
*Do not smoke or operate electrical switches or appliances in the area. Doing so may produce a spark that could ignite the gas and cause an explosion.
Disclaimer: This information was taken directly from a flyer from PSE&G and I give them full credit for this information. If you need any additional information, please check out the PSE&G website.