City, Utilities Reach Plan to Prevent Gas Leaks

By: News 10
By: News 10

In response to the recent series of gas leaks that occurred during construction work on Michigan Avenue in downtown Lansing, Mayor Virg Bernero, Consumers Energy and the City's Public Service Department today announced a six-point plan to prevent further disruptions in downtown Lansing during this summer's construction season.

"We had a very positive and productive meeting this morning that has resulted in a new plan for verifying the location of underground utility services," Mayor Bernero said. "With these new guidelines in place, I am confident that we can move forward with construction with a greater degree of certainty that the information we have is accurate. No amount of planning can prevent every accident, but we are making sure that our contractors, our Public Service Department, Consumers Energy and other utilities are all working together to get the job done right."

Under the new Guidelines for Underground Infrastructure Detection and Excavation (GUIDE), contractors working on the Michigan Avenue Streetscape Enhancement and other local construction projects will take additional steps to ensure that the location of underground utilities, including gas, electric and water services, are identified and accurately marked prior to excavation.

The plan includes the following actions:

  1. Miss Dig will be contacted to remark all existing utilities affected by downtown construction.
  2. Consumers Energy will provide a dedicated employee to help locate gas lines in the area.
  3. Other utilities will be contacted to verify the location of their lines.
  4. Basement access will be used to verify service lines to buildings.
  5. Workers will take extra steps to expose utilities to verify their physical location prior to construction activity.
  6. Street address information will be confirmed along with any updates from recent infrastructure projects in the downtown area.

Mayor Bernero said he has authorized the Public Service Department to resume construction activities on Michigan Avenue with the condition that no subsurface excavation will be permitted until the remarking of utility services is complete.

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