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Repairing a Leaking Main Under Railroad Tracks

Project Overview

Baltimore Gas and Electric (BGE) operates some of the oldest gas pipelines in the U.S. and discovered one of their large diameter gas distributions mains was leaking under railroad tracks. The 20″ diameter main ran along a residential street and then in parallel with several high traffic train tracks. ULC Robotics’ CISBOT was able to renew the joints in the main and solve a very high profile problem within the organization without having to excavate over or near the train tracks and without disrupting gas service.

Industry: Gas Distribution

Location: Baltimore, Maryland

Client: Baltimore Gas & Electric

Pipe Diameter: 20″

Business Areas Addressed:

  • Gas Remediation


  • Total of 18 joints were sealed
  • All gas leaks were monitored after sealing and eliminated
  • No disruption to major transportation pathway

The Problem

A gas main with leaking joints that is located under railroad tracks is an exceptionally challenging problem for any gas utility. The organizations responsible for railroad activities do not allow any excavation within approximately 20 feet of the tracks to ensure that major transportation pathways are not disrupted. Obtaining permits and approvals to excavate within that zone would require BGE to acquire special permits to stop commercial and consumer rail activity for several hours.

Project Results

A total of 18 joints were sealed in the 20″ cast iron gas main. Following the CISBOT project, BGE monitored the gas leak and closed the leak folder. This project gained attention within BGE and its parent company, Exelon.

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