Dangerous Cross Bores

cross bore picture 2Plumbing Cross bores in the Fraser Valley and the Lower Mainland

Our plumbers at BC Redi-Rooter Ltd are leading the way in cross bore safety, safely clearing your main sanitary sewer lines and storm drains in the Fraser Valley and the Lower Mainland by strictly following the newer regulations set out by Fortis BC, BC Hydro, Telus, BC One Call, Work Safe BC and others, ensuring the safety of your home, your family and/or staff, our staff and others for years to come.

If you are uncertain what cross bores are and why they are so dangerous, let’s look into it! First underground gas lines are made of good quality, non-corrosive plastics. These plastics lines are unknowingly pulled through other utilities like storm sewers, sanitary sewers, and others. Most of the drain cleaning equipment that plumbers use is high strength spinning wire cable and cutters or extremely high pressure water jetting equipment that will cut and rip through one of these gas lines in an instant. Once the high pressure gas is set free, the gas travels up toward the operator of the equipment and purges into the home, in the hunt for a source of ignition. Often the operator of the drain cleaning machine has already become immune to the smell of gas as he has been working close to your sewer pipe that already smells putrid like gas for some time now. By the time someone may realize the difference between the smell of sewer or natural gas, it has been too late and an explosion has already occurred.

cross bore pictureElectric cross bore cable conduits are a little stronger than plastic gas lines, but they only take a few seconds longer to cut through an electric conduit than gas piping before the people in the vicinity of the drain cleaning equipment are in severe, life threatening danger.

Cross bores happen by mistake! Utilities sometimes are placed underground by highly specialized equipment such as hydraulic power rams, self-tunneling drills, tunneling, micro-tunneling and more. On a massive scale, right here in the lower mainland, Skytrain is using trenchless technology for some of the underground Evergreen Line. On a smaller scale 1.5 inch power moles are hydraulically ramming their way under the country piercing through storm and sewer lines somewhat blindly, pulling utilities like high voltage electricity power lines and high pressure natural gas piping behind them. Although this equipment is very specialized, cross bores are still happening all of the time and the danger is very severe and very real and can go unnoticed for days, for months, and even years.

When BC Redi-Rooter Ltd plumbers in the Fraser Valley and The Lower Mainland receives a call for a sewer or storm drain blockage or just a slow moving drain, we have been trained with your safety and ours as part of our profession. Plumbers in British Columbia, the Fraser Valley and The Lower Mainland must follow the newer guidelines to keep your family and ours safe from life threatening cross bores. A homeowner should never allow a plumber to snake out their plumbing system if the plumber does not carry a sewer camera to double check for safety and to enhance the chance that the line is clear, this is not something to gamble with. In some instances, gas lines and electrical lines in the Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley were installed without permits, therefore, BC One Call would not have a safety record of the installation. These un-permitted and dangerous installations final line of safety defense is one of our high tech digital sewer cameras. If BC Redi-Rooter Ltd discovers a cross bore with one of our digital recording sewer cameras, the plumber will assess the situation and may evacuate the building, if it is a gas line, shut off the gas to the home and notify BC One Call and the Home homeowner, and The BC Safety Authority.