Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Charlie Foxtrot in Dallas

Journalist Jim Schutze explains what he and his neighbors are living through now.  We’re guessing the sinkhole was nothing compared to this…

Scary problem with the gas company. Atmos has been digging up our alley all weekend because of water in their gas supply line. Our appliances – and those of our neighbors – keep shutting off because of intermittent supply.

Atmos comes back and vacuums out the water. It builds up again and our appliances shut off again.
That’s maybe OK with things like water heaters that have automatic shut-offs (thermo-couplers, I now know), but it does nothing to protect gas ranges with piezo lighters.

Sooner or later, somebody will turn on a burner and then walk out in the yard. If the gas shuts off momentarily, that valve will be open but unlighted – a fast leak.

The gas company lady just told me that situation will be OK because the people can smell the leak.


She also had my records all totally wrong about when they had been here and what they had done. Each time one of us calls Atmos, it’s a fresh start and they treat it as a household problem. The Atmos lady also told me she had no way of seeing the complaints and calls from my neighbors.

It’s whack-a-mole meets groundhog day every time we call. No wonder houses blow up. We should all be on CNG tanks until hey replace their line for the whole block.

The Atmos crews have told me they can’t replace their line because there’s a big city water leak in the alley that the city won’t fix. One guy said, “You don’t have a gas problem, sir. You have a water problem.” I said, “No, YOU have a water problem,. I have a gas [problem.”

I can’t even tell you how many crews have come to the block in the last three days, but my water heater as off again this morning. One guy admitted to me that water had made its way through my meter into my household gas line, but he told me that was now my problem.

This is some Third World shit.

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