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PG& E hosts hydrotest open house
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Pacific Gas and Electric Company is holding a public meeting to let Turlock residents know what to expect during an upcoming hydrostatic pressure test on a natural gas pipeline.

According to PG&E, the test is part of a system-wide program to ensure the safety of the transmission pipelines that deliver gas across the region.

PG&E will be testing on N. Soderquist Road, between Fulkerth Road and West Main Street; on West Main Street, between N. Soderquist Road and West Avenue South; and on West Avenue South, between West Main Street and Angelus Street, in Turlock. Work will begin in mid-August and last until late October, although weather and other factors affecting safe working conditions could change the schedule.

This test involves excavating around parts of the underground pipeline, filling the pipeline with water, and increasing the pressure to a level that is much higher than the pipeline’s normal operating pressure with natural gas. The test will confirm the pipeline’s safe operating pressure and reveal potential weaknesses. If the pipe does not meet acceptable standards, it will be repaired or replaced with new pipe.

During this test,  PG&E and contractor trucks, water tanks, and heavy equipment will be in the designated testing areas. During construction, PG&E will clearly mark all work areas, and traffic flaggers will help to direct traffic. Plan for minor delays when driving through this area.

Gas service should continue without interruption in most cases. If that changes, a PG&E representative will contact affected residences and businesses.

At times, the smell of gas may be noticeable and a loud, steady noise may be heard as PG&E workers vent natural gas from the pipeline. Although this is normal when crews are working, anyone who has concerns about the smell of gas can call 1-800-743-5000 any time.

The public meeting will be held from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday at Calvary Temple Baptist Church, 612 West Ave.