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NIPSCO (copy)

Crews will be inspecting NIPSCO natural gas lines in Chesterton and Michigan City this week.

NIPSCO warns that residents in Chesterton and Michigan City may smell the chemical that's mixed into natural gas and hear "audible noises" as crews check natural gas pipelines in the area this week.

The Merrillville-based utility and contractors from Minnesota Limited and T.D. Williamson will be performing inspections to ensure the integrity of NIPSCO's natural gas lines in Porter and LaPorte counties Tuesday through Thursday.

"NIPSCO performs these inspections periodically to test the integrity of our natural gas lines," the company said in a press release. "This is done to ensure we can continue to provide safe and efficient natural gas service to our customers. Residents and businesses near County Road 1500 North and Furnessville Road in Chesterton and County Line Road and 300 North in Michigan City may observe a distinguishable audible noise and may experience natural gas odors in the air as a result of this routine procedure."

The inspections are not expected to experience any service disruptions.

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NIPSCO urges everyone to report natural gas odors, even if they think it's related to this project, by calling 800-464-7726.

While natural gas itself has no odor, utilities add the chemical mercaptan so there's a distinctive rotten egg smell that people can report.

Anyone who smells the rotten egg odor should leave the scene quickly, warn others to stay away and remain outside until the technician shows up as a precaution.

For more information, visit nipsco.com.

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Business Reporter

Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.