Natural Gas Service Application
Nat.Gas Service and Gas Main Extension Policy
Revised Gas Tap Fee Schedule
Gas Appliance Rebate Program & Policy
The Bessemer City Natural Gas Department personnel strive to operate the gas system with an emphasis on safety. As one of the many people who live or work near our natural gas system, you can help us keep the gas system operating safely. The following information will be useful to you, and also help you keep us informed of safety issues:
Recognize and react to a gas leak
Know the gas leak instructions
Know the dangers of Carbon Monoxide gas
Know the dangers of using flexible gas connectors
Know the reason for pipeline markers
Know how to recognize a Pipeline emergency
Know why we should protect gas meters
Please read and be familiar with Public Awareness Plan Brochure that is mailed July & November of each year.
If a natural gas leak occurs, your sense of sight and smell will help you identify the possible leak and its location. The following are good detection methods: Natural Gas has no odor; the odor one smells when a gas leak occurs comes from an additive called Mercaptan. It is added so anyone can recognize it as natural gas. It smells like rotten eggs.
Carbon Monoxide gas is a by –product of burning fuel, any fuel, natural gas included. The symptoms of CO poisoning are: headaches, nausea, vomiting and death! If you suspect you have an improper burning gas appliance or a problem with a vent system call your service person as soon as possible and have them check and make repairs as needed. If you suspect you have a gas leak, you should notify the Gas Company as soon as possible, or call 911 immediately!
Gas Leaking Inside:
Open all windows, upper and lower sections
Open all exterior doors
Call the Gas Department at 704-833-0371 or dial 911
If you call the gas company from inside the structure where the leak occurs, DO NOT hang up the phone
Do not turn “ON” any lights, or turn “OFF” any lights that are already on
Get everyone out of the structure and to a safe area away from the leak
Do not start car engines, walk away
Do not use any type of telephone (cell phone) or two-way radio equipment
Warn others to stay out of the structure
Avoid all potential ignition sources
A damaged or weakened pipeline
Gas Leaking Outside:
Call the gas company or dial 911 and leave the area
Warn others to stay away from the area
Flexible gas appliance connectors are easy to use; they install quickly and make gas appliance installation much easier. But some of these connectors were manufactured using metal that was too thin! The connector pipe will break if you make the bend too sharp or it might break when you pull the appliance away from the wall.
Please note – each gas appliance should have it’s own control valve. This could be a quarter turn valve installed in the fuel piping where it comes through the floor to serve a particular appliance. It would be possible to shut the gas off to that appliance and not interrupt the flow of gas to other appliances.
Pipeline markers are placed along the length of the pipeline right of way. Line markers WARN everyone that a pipeline or other utility is buried in the area. They only indicate the “approximate” location of the pipeline and should not be used as a means to locate the exact location of a pipeline. The pipeline may not follow a straight line between the pipeline markers. These markers give no information as to the depth of a pipeline, nor do they indicate the number of pipelines or other utilities buried there.
Never try to locate a pipeline yourself, always contact the North Carolina One Call Center at 1-800-632-4949. Give them the information as they request and they will notify everyone with a utility in the area of your planned excavation. The only requirement we ask is that you give us a 48 hour notice to allow us time to respond to the locate request and mark our utilities. There is no charge for this service.
The leading cause of pipeline leaks is damage from construction equipment such as earth moving equipment and power tools operated by untrained and uninformed personnel. During your excavation activities around our gas pipelines, we request that if you or your crew were to hit, scrape, dent, gouge, crease or bend the pipeline in anyway, please call the gas company immediately. We will check the area of the pipeline before a SAFETY problem occurs.
Some examples of Pipeline Emergencies:
A leaking pipeline
A damaged or weakened pipeline
An explosion or fire ON, NEAR, or INVOLVING a pipeline or pipeline facility
The Gas Company will determine the location of a gas meter at a structure. We will choose a location that provides visibility and safety for the gas meter with respect to riding lawn mowers and falling objects.
Snow is not normally a problem in this area, however, there is always a possibility of snow building up on the roof and eventually sliding off and onto the gas meter. There have been cases where this problem has caused the piping attached to the gas meter to break, causing a gas leak.
Pipeline Safety Regulations, Title 49, Part 192 of the Code of Federal Regulations, requires that the City, as an operator of a Natural Gas System, inform all of our customers of the following information:
Bessemer City DOES NOT maintain the customer owned buried piping. This is the piping on the outlet side of the gas meter that runs UNDERGROUND to supply gas to your appliances.
All buried gas piping should be:
• Periodically inspected for leaks
• If metallic, piping should be inspected for corrosion
• Repaired or replaced, if unsafe conditions are found
• Plumbers & Heating contractors can assist you in locating, inspecting and repairing your customer owned, buried piping.
As stated in Bessemer City’s “Gas Tariff, Terms and Conditions”, the gas department may inspect your customer owned gas system for compliance with the code. If, upon inspection, the technician determines that a HAZARD exists, your gas service will be terminated. Upon repair of the hazard and an inspection by Gaston County Building Inspection Dept., your gas service will be reinstated.
Natural Gas Residential Tap Fees in the Bessemer City ETJ Areas with Natural Gas Lines
Already In Place
The Natural Gas Tap fee for these residential customers with a minimum of a gas hot water heater or gas furnace shall be waived for a period of two years ending on December 10, 2013. The waiver is only for standard AC250 and AL425 meters and the excess flow valve fees will still be applicable. The customer will be required to have the residence plumbed and inspected by the County inspector and subsequently by the City’s Natural Gas employees prior to the City’s installation of the riser and city portion of the residential gas line.
The gas tap fee for All Industrial customers will be **$3,000.00
All gas tap fees for this customer base category are subject to the requirements of Bessemer City’s, Gas Tariff Terms and Conditions, involving the use of natural gas for Plant Heating and/or gas usage for Production purposes. Tap fees are also subject to the Rebate Program policy, (if any) in effect at the time of application.
Industrial Interruptible Customers
The gas tap fees for All Industrial Interruptible customers will be **$12,000.00
All gas tap fees for this customer base category are subject to the provisions and requirements of Bessemer City’s, Gas Tariff Terms and Conditions, involving the use of natural gas for Plant Heating and/or Production purposes, the ability to convert to an alternative fuel within the specified time period.
Tap fees are also subject to the Rebate Program policy, (if any) in effect at the time of application.
* See the Rebate Program policy, (if any) in effect at the of application for gas service!
** See the Rebate Program policy, and the Gas Tariff Terms and Conditions policy for ref.
The standard Residential and Small Commercial gas tap fee will be $450.00, this fee must be paid in advance and prior to the actual installation of the gas service tap.
Rebate Program Requirements
As long as funds are available, the City of Bessemer City, Natural Gas Department will offer a Rebate Program to all new gas utility service customers. This rebate program is based on the type of, and number of gas fired appliances installed by the customer or builder.
This Rebate Program is available to all citizens within the City’s Gas Utility Service Area and are directly able to connect to Bessemer City’s Natural Gas pipeline System. To qualify for a rebate, all gas fired appliances must be installed, connected to the gas meter and in operation at the time of the Rebate Inspection by Gas Department personnel. Gas Fire Logs are considered a decorative appliance and will not be included in any rebate dollar amount for multiple gas appliance usage!
Single Gas Fired Appliance, Winter Use Only
Gas tap fee of $450.00. For gas service installations where the customer has installed a Primary Gas Heating System (gas furnace) and has installed a set of gas fire logs, but no other gas fired appliances were installed. Sorry NO REBATE is offered for this type service.
Multiple Use, Year Round Gas Usage
At least two of four required gas fired appliances installed. Gas tap fee of $450.00. For gas service installations where the customer has installed Primary Gas Heat (gas furnace) and has installed ONE additional gas fired appliance(s), either a gas hot water heater, a gas cook stove or a gas clothes dryer (customers choice). Once connection is verified the rebate for this type of gas usage will be $100.00.
Multiple Use, Year Round Gas Usage
At least three of four required gas appliances installed. Gas tap fee of $450.00. For gas service installations where the customer has installed Primary Gas Heat(gas furnace) and any TWO additional gas fired appliances (either gas cook stove, and a gas hot water heater, and/or a gas clothes dryer). Once connections are verified, the Rebate will be $150.00.
Multiple Use, Year Round Gas Usage
Natural Choice, Total Gas Usage, Gas tap fee of $450.00. For gas service installations where the customer has installed All of the following required gas fired appliances (gas furnace, gas cook stove, gas clothes dryer, and gas hot water heater). Once connections are verified, the Rebate will be will be $200.00.
Industrial and Industrial Interruptible Gas Service Rebates
Gas tap fees are as indicated in the current Gas Tap Fee Schedule. Rebates for this type of customer will be all or a portion of the actual gas tap fee. Any and all Rebates will be at the discretion of the City Manager and the Utilities Director, after a discussion of the costs involved with the installation of the gas service, the anticipated load factor of the customer, or gas service tap installed on the six inch, High Pressure Distribution Pipeline.
As long as the City has sufficient gas available to permit the addition of new customers, the City will provide for additional gas service taps and gas main extensions in the following manner:
Gas Service Taps:
The standard gas tap fee for all new residential and small commercial customers is set with the Annual Budget and Schedule of Fees approved by City Council. A Rebate Program or Waiver of Tap Fees may be available.
The tap fee must be paid in advance and the gas department will schedule the installation of gas service upon receipt of the paid receipt from the City’s Finance Department.
The City will install the service line up to 150 feet or less from the main to the structure as part of the standard tap fee. For a service line longer than 150 feet, a charge consisting of the actual cost of pipe plus $0.30 per foot over the 150 feet will be assessed to the customer in addition to the tap fee.
In the event a customer requests relocation of a tap and meter, the customer shall complete a new application and pay a new tap fee equal to the amount contained in the most recent fee schedule approved by City Council. The City retains the right to refuse relocation of a tap and meter if relocation exceeds the cost of the applicable tap fee. The City also retains the right to refuse relocation of a tap and meter if the relocation area is unsuitable to the City or if the relocation area is in violation of any code requirements pursuant to Federal, State and/or Local regulations.
In the event a customer requests an upgrade in meter size above AL-425 due to an increase in BTU requirements, the customer shall pay the actual costs borne by the City for the meter and required regulator as well as the piping and fittings used to complete the upgrade.
Gas Main Extensions:
If, in order to provide service, an extension to an existing gas main is required, the City will extend the main a distance of up to 200 feet as a part of the nominal tap fee. In addition, the City will provide for an additional 100 foot credit towards the extension footage for each residence or commercial structure existing and directly able to be served by such an extension. For footages above the credits, there shall be a charge consisting of the actual cost of the pipe plus $0.30 per foot.
The City retains the right to refuse new main extension or service in any case where the cost of such extension or service appears to be uneconomical to the City.
Approved by Council Action July 2, 2004
Revised by Council Action January 14, 2008
Revised by Council Action February 9, 2009
Revised by Council Action January 9, 2011
The City of Bessemer City operates a section of the City’s natural gas system inside the city limits of Gastonia. If your residence is inside this section of the service area, you must get a Gas Application Installation Permit and Inspection from the City of Gastonia, Department of Code Enforcement.
All others must get a permit and inspection from the Gaston County Building Inspection Department. Bessemer City requires that all customers have their gas appliances and customer piping inspected and approved by a NC licensed HVAC contractor prior to the installation of a gas meter. This rule is for your SAFETY and to assure Bessemer City, as the gas supplier, that your gas fired appliances have been inspected by a competent person and that it is SAFE to operate.
No Two Pound Residential Gas Systems
The City’s gas system will supply “seven inches of water column pressure” (4 ounces pressure) for all residential applications.
Location of Meter
Under no circumstances will a gas meter be located at the rear of a residence or business. A gas meter cannot be located in front of a vent, where the possibility of leaking gas could migrate into the structure. The City is required to maintain 36 inches clearance between the gas meter and any point of ignition, such as an electrical meter base or a heating unit quick disconnect.
Bessemer City requires that there be 36 inches of Black Steel Pipe installed on the outlet (customer side) of the gas meter. This pipe must be attached to the structure wall so that it will help support the gas meter. Bessemer City will not install a meter until this requirement is met.
Where there is piping coming through the building wall, near the outlet of the gas meter, do not extend this pipe more than 4 inches. This piping should not be more than 20 inches to the RIGHT of the gas riser.
Where there is a fence installed at the side yard location, the gas meter must be located either on the front of the building or inside the fenced area nearest to the front corner of the building.
Installation of a Gas Meter
The gas department will install a gas meter AFTER the inspector has approved the installation of appliances and witnessed a pressure test on the customer piping. If approved, the inspector will place an approval sticker on the customer piping, near the final connection point.
The gas department will the final connection if the customer is within 12 inches of the meter outlet. The gas department will not make the final connection to COPPER TUBING.
Gas Pipe Bonding
Each above-ground portion of a gas piping system that has the potential to become energized shall be electrically continuous and bonded to an effective ground-fault current path. Gas piping shall be considered to be bonded where it is connected to appliances that are connected to the equipment grounding conductor of the circuit supplying that appliance. An insulating union shall be used after meter and before customer piping. (NFPA 54 National Fuel Gas Code)
Excess Flow Valves
As a requirement of Distribution and Pipeline Integrity Management regulations, the City of Bessemer City Natural Gas Department, as of January 1, 2006, is required to install an Excess Flow Valve on any and all new or renewed “residential” natural gas service. These Excess Flow Valves will be installed on the Customer’s gas service piping and will be maintained by the City’s Gas Department. The cost of the Excess Flow Valve will be at the Customer’s expense.
Excess Flow Valves are designed to be installed on gas service piping at the point of connection to the gas main. Excess Flow Valves are designed to maintain a set amount of gas flow pressure to the residence. It is designed to protect the residence or property in the event the gas service piping is accidentally cut and will stop or limit the flow of gas between the gas main and the damaged point.